Historians on Mali crisis

A few months ago, historians Baz Lecocq (Ghent University) and Gregory Mann (Columbia University) assembled a multinational, interdisciplinary team of Mali scholars to write a comprehensive analysis of that country's crisis. Lotte Pelckmans was one of the eight researchers who contributed to this project.

One Hippopotamus and Eight Blind Analysts

Until February 2012, Mali was one of the Netherlands main ‘donor darlings’. Mali was considered as an exemplary democratic state in West Africa. After a coup in March 2012, this image has been turned completely upside down. Currently, this landlocked West African country has become an international battle field with extremely diverse issues at stake: drugs, terrorism, human trafficking, ethnic tensions, religious agenda’s, political representation.

No single scholar can claim full understanding of all the historical aspects and events that preceded this conflict. Therefore, eight authors with longstanding experience in the area decided to pool data in the hope that they could obtain a more profound level of analysis. Apart from Lotte Pelckmans and the abovementioned historians, also Bruce Whitehouse, Dida Badi, Nadia Belalimat, Bruce Hall and Wolfram Lacher are involved in the project. The article gives an overview of the crisis in Mali as it unfolded early 2012. You can find the article* here.

* This paper is an extended version of an article to appear in the Review of African Political Economy vol. 137 (2013) under the title “One Hippopotamus and Eight Blind Analysts: A multivocal analysis of the 2012 political crisis in the divided Republic of Mali.” When citing details presented in this paper which do not appear in the definitive form in ROAPE 137, please refer to this paper under the formal title with “Extended Editors Cut” added and give the URL where you found it; for all other citations please refer to the final version in ROAPE 137 under its title.

Last Modified: 18-04-2013