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date: 15 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines Africa’s “renaissance” following a “growth tragedy,” or “chronic growth failure,” between the mid-1990s and the mid-2000s. It puts the African growth experiences of the last 50 years into perspective by analyzing these so-called growth tragedy and renaissance. The chapter begins by discussing the merits and the shortcomings of explanations that have been put forward to account for an African growth tragedy based on “meta-structural” factors. It then considers Africa’s accelerated economic growth and the factors behind this renaissance, focusing on the experiences of Mozambique and Ethiopia. Finally, it challenges both the older narrative of an African growth tragedy and the more recent narrative of Africa rising, arguing that they failed to provide a more realistic approach to understanding the challenges and prospects of long-term economic development in the continent.

Keywords: Africa, growth tragedy, renaissance, meta-structural factors, economic growth, Mozambique, Ethiopia, economic development

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