Crisis at the crossroads: the conjuncture of internal and external impediments to development in Sudan

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Virginia Tech

The conventional theoretical and analytical debate surrounding contemporary African underdevelopment attempts to classify or label the impediments to development primarily within an internal-external dichotomy. This thesis questions the internal-external approach in that it may limit the opportunity to examine the situation more in terms of a single process, blending the forces that hinder political and economic growth. The case of the Sudan illustrates this 'holistic' concept in that certain fundamental constraints wi thin the Sudan combined with specific external factors place severe limitations on both the economic and political development of the country. The traditional disunity and absence of a legitimate political authority within the Sudan, combined with the Sudan's integration into the world economic system, has created a situation that is detrimental to development. Rather than place the blame or responsibility for underdevelopment on any particular set of forces, I have examined how these forces have intertwined to create the present conditions in the Sudan, perhaps highlighting similar situations throughout other Third World nations as well.