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Colonialism in Africa was an outcome of capital expansion in europe
This article reviews how colonial rule and African actions during the colonial period affected the resources and institutional settings for subsequent economic development south of the Sahara.
The issue is seen from the perspective of the dynamics of development in what was in 1900 an overwhelmingly land-abundant region characterized by shortages of labour and capital, by perhaps surprisingly extensive indigenous market activities and by varying but often low levels of political centralization.
The differential impact of French and British rule is explored, but it is argued that a bigger determinant of the differential evolution of poverty, welfare and structural change was the contrast between "settler" and "peasant" economies.