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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:'Echoing silences': ethnicity in post-colonial Zimbabwe, 1980-2007
Authors:Muzondidya, JamesISNI
Ndlovu-Gatsheni, SabeloISNI
Periodical:African Journal on Conflict Resolution
Geographic term:Zimbabwe
External link:https://www.accord.org.za/ajcr-issues/echoing-silences/
Abstract:In spite of its rare entry into both official and public discourses about contemporary Zimbabwe, ethnicity, alongside race, has continued to shape and influence the economic, social, and political life of Zimbabwe since the achievement of independence in 1980. Zezuru, Manyika, Karanga and Ndebele ethno-regional identities have become the main basis through which power has been contested. This article argues that whilst Zimbabwe has since the days of the Gukurahundi war (1982-1986) not experienced serious ethnic-based conflicts, there is serious ethnic polarization in the country and ethnicity remains one of the challenges to the survival of both the State and the country. This ethnic polarization is to be explained mainly in terms of the failure of the State to develop an effective response to the political economy of ethnicity inherited from the colonial past. The government has largely remained reluctant to engage ethnicity as an issue in politics and the economy, The nationalist government's State-building project, especially its coercive mobilization of the early 1980s, paid little attention to the ethnic configuration of the inherited State, or the structures and institutions which enacted and reproduced ethnicity. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract, edited]