Bridging Divided Identities – or an Agency of Political Domination? Reassessing the Future of the Tanzanian Union

Bridging Divided Identities – or an Agency of Political Domination? Reassessing the Future of... Bridging Divided Identities – or an Agency of Political Domination? Reassessing the Future of the Tanzanian Union KJETIL TRONVOLL* 1. Introduction Tanzania is often portrayed as an African success story of state and nation-building, surrounded by neighbouring countries which have been ridden by conflicts and grave human rights violations during the post-colonial period. The successive Tanzanian governments have, by most observers, been characterised as fairly benign and accountable, although the radical ujamaa policy has in retrospect been increasingly criticised. 1 Despite this weakness of an indigenous brand of African socialism, the ‘father of the nation’, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, has left a legacy of political toler- ance and nationhood on line with few other African independence leaders. This is in particular noteworthy considering the fact that Tanzania is a political Union, estab- lished in 1964 by the two independent, sovereign states of Tanganyika and Zanzibar. The success of the Tanzanian polity is partly based on developing and formulating a national political discourse, where ethnic or parochial sentiments have been muted. This legacy of Nyerere has seemingly forged a vibrant and all-embracing Tanzanian identity. Or, this is how it was perceived until the fall of the single-party doctrine in the http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal on Minority and Group Rights Brill

Bridging Divided Identities – or an Agency of Political Domination? Reassessing the Future of the Tanzanian Union

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© 2006 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1385-4879
eISSN
1571-8115
D.O.I.
10.1163/157181106777909885
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Bridging Divided Identities – or an Agency of Political Domination? Reassessing the Future of the Tanzanian Union KJETIL TRONVOLL* 1. Introduction Tanzania is often portrayed as an African success story of state and nation-building, surrounded by neighbouring countries which have been ridden by conflicts and grave human rights violations during the post-colonial period. The successive Tanzanian governments have, by most observers, been characterised as fairly benign and accountable, although the radical ujamaa policy has in retrospect been increasingly criticised. 1 Despite this weakness of an indigenous brand of African socialism, the ‘father of the nation’, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, has left a legacy of political toler- ance and nationhood on line with few other African independence leaders. This is in particular noteworthy considering the fact that Tanzania is a political Union, estab- lished in 1964 by the two independent, sovereign states of Tanganyika and Zanzibar. The success of the Tanzanian polity is partly based on developing and formulating a national political discourse, where ethnic or parochial sentiments have been muted. This legacy of Nyerere has seemingly forged a vibrant and all-embracing Tanzanian identity. Or, this is how it was perceived until the fall of the single-party doctrine in the

Journal

International Journal on Minority and Group RightsBrill

Published: Jan 1, 2006

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