INTRODUCTION TO CONGOLESE POLITICS (Certificate)

Updated: Apr 13

(This is a stand alone course for people interested in Congolese Politics.)


This course provides an introduction to Congolese politics and will help you develop the learning approaches and study skills you need to progress to an undergraduate degree in politics.



Designed for students who have never studied Congolese politics at an advanced level, this module introduces you to contemporary politics in DR Congo. You will explore the political beliefs of the main Congolese political parties through case studies of current issues, social movements, pressure groups and campaigns.

Develop your approaches to learning and the academic skills required for successful undergraduate study by taking this module, which gives you the opportunity to debate key political concepts and to place Congolese politics in a wider African and international context.


“One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.”

This course introduces students to major debates in the contemporary study of Congolese politics and development, setting these issues within their historical, social and cultural contexts. It analyses the shifting balance between the state and society, the role of international forces, the changing role of the state in development and the most recent important trends such as urbanisation and the emergence of particularly young populations.


The selected themes are examined with reference to continental patterns and variations and reflect key areas of academic and public debate, and fields in which there is a lively and often contested literature.

Students are given the opportunity to engage with some of the most important questions facing Congo today, such as: What was the impact of colonial rule? Are Congolese states different to European states? Are they really states at all? Why has Congo seen so many civil wars?


Learning outcomes

At the end of this course the student should be able to:

> Describe the key features of states in Congo, and discuss whether or not they are different to states elsewhere in the world.

> Explain the key domestic/international and political/economic/social/geographical challenges to Congolese development.

> Analyse the variation between DR Congo's development trajectories and political settlements, with reference to history and theory.

> Evaluate the usefulness of different theories and frameworks for understanding politics and development in Congo.

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