Dividing lines, converging aims : a moral analysis of micro-regionalism in Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire
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This thesis provides a moral analysis of micro-regional forces in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire, using the framework of the New Regionalism Approach (NRA). It presents an original contribution to the field through the addition of the Ghanaian-Ivoirian case study, as well as a unique application of Martha Nussbaum’s Capabilities Approach to the NRA. In an attempt to counter the view that borders in Africa are artificial, arbitrary and the result of colonial imposition, this research employs the Capabilities Approach, providing a narrative of both positive and negative impacts resulting from the opportunity created by borders in West Africa. The way in which the Ghanaian-Ivoirian border is used by individuals in their security strategies in the face of economic deprivation and physical threats represents a positive impact of borders. Conversely, the role of borders in the continued prevalence of human trafficking in West Africa is also questioned in this piece, providing a balanced account of the impact of borders. This research concludes that the Ghanaian-Ivoirian border presents opportunities that can be exploited to both positive and negative ends at the micro-regional level. This interpretation suggests that any complete account of borders in West Africa more broadly ought to employ a moral framework in addition to a multi-levelled scale of analysis.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
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