Zambia's role in Southern Africa : a re-interpretation

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Songiso, Mukelabai
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This thesis is a critical study of two approaches used to analyse Zambia's regional policies in Southern Africa in the period 1964-80. One approach, the idiosyncratic, regards personality and ideology as the central factors that have shaped the country's regional behaviour while the political economy school treats economic interests and class formation as the key to the understanding of Zambia's regional policies. These two approaches have generated debate amongst scholars as to the relative impact of these two sets of factors on the country's regional policies. This thesis has endeavoured to expose the theoretical as well as the analytical strengths and weaknesses of these approaches when applied to Zambia's responses to U.D.I, in Rhodesia, the civil War in Angola in 1975-76 and to Zambia's relations with South Africa. What has emerged from this study is that neither of these approaches offers an adequate analysis of Zambia's regional policies since their exponents are selective in their choice of evidence: Zambia's foreign policy consistently and simultaneously reflected elements of ideology and interest. However, the insights outlined by the two approaches have been utilized in this thesis to provide a comprehensive analysis of Zambia's regional policies in the period 1964-80.
: Political science , Political participation