Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
States and Power in AfricaComparative Lessons in Authority and Control$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Jeffrey Herbst

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780691164137

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691164137.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM PRINCETON SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.princeton.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Princeton University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PRSO for personal use.date: 28 June 2022

The Coin of the African Realm

The Coin of the African Realm

(p.201) Seven The Coin of the African Realm
States and Power in Africa

Jeffrey Herbst

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines the politics of the currency in West Africa from the beginning of the twentieth century. A public series of debates over the nature of the currency occurred in West Africa during both the colonial and independence periods. Since 1983, West African countries have been pioneers in Africa in developing new strategies to combat overvaluation of the currency and reduce the control of government over the currency supply. The chapter charts the evolution of West African currencies as boundaries and explores their relationship to state consolidation. It shows that leaders in African capitals managed to make the units they ruled increasingly distinct from the international and regional economies, but the greater salience of the currency did not end up promoting state consolidation. Rather, winning the ability to determine the value of the currency led to a series of disastrous decisions that severely weakened the states themselves.

Keywords:   politics, currency, West Africa, boundaries, state consolidation

Princeton Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.