How Europe Underdeveloped Africa is an ambitious masterwork of political economy, detailing the impact of slavery and colonialism on the history of international capitalism. In this classic book, Rodney makes the unflinching case that African “mal-development” is not a natural feature of geography, but a direct product of imperial extraction from the continent, a practice that continues up into the present. Meticulously researched, How Europe Underdeveloped Africa remains a relevant study for understanding the so-called “great divergence” between Africa and Europe, just as it remains a prescient resource for grasping the multiplication of global inequality today.
In this new edition, Angela Davis offers a striking foreword to the book, exploring its lasting contributions to a revolutionary and feminist practice of anti-imperialism.
“Walter Rodney’s magisterial opus is recognized globally as a landmark in African studies, not to mention the history of colonialism and imperialism. Beautifully written and expertly argued, it is that rare book that can be called a classic. It belongs on every bookshelf.”
“This book is a legendary classic that galvanized freedom fighters around the world.”
“Walter Rodney was a pioneering scholar who provided new answers to old questions and posed new questions in relation to the study of Africa.”
“This classic work of black political thought, political economy, and Africa history inspired scholars and political activists in the struggle against colonialism and its misrepresentations of the past. I applaud this reissue, which should bring Rodney’s prescient analysis to a new generation struggling from below, in whose hands, he would have reminded us, is no less than the future of humankind.”