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Title:From nuclear imperialism to petro-democracy? Resource assemblages and the emergence of a new political configuration in Niger
Author:Schritt, Jannik
Periodical:Canadian Journal of African Studies (ISSN 0008-3968)
Geographic term:Niger
political economy
External link:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00083968.2016.1202850
Abstract:The rentier state and resource curse concepts understand oil and uranium as fixed resources generating economic rents. In doing so, these theories largely ignore the social, economic, political and technological arrangements essential for a material substance like oil or uranium to become a resource. By comparing the diachronic and synchronic entanglements of the different socio-technical arrangements of oil and uranium in Niger, the assumption of the resource curse and rentier state theories, that resource revenues foster authoritarian tendencies, is revisited. Exploring the concept of resource assemblages, this article analyzes how political configurations are related to the process of resource exploitation. This perspective reveals that a new resource-political configuration in Niger has emerged since the beginning of oil production. Whereas Niger's uranium-political configuration has long been characterized by a neocolonial discursive formation, the emerging petro-political configuration has produced a new resource nationalism in public opinion and governance which is transforming politics in Niger. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract]