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DEVELOPMENT AND CHANGE IN THE WOLOF SOCIAL FORMATION: A STUDY OF PRIMITIVE COMMUNISM
This dissertation analyzes the Wolof social formation of West Africa prior to the 15th century historical conjuncture of European merchant penetration. The framework is that of a reformulation of Marxian theory which builds upon the work of Louis Althusser. Using the concepts of fundamental and subsumed class processes, the study shows the existence of a complex class structure within an apparent no-class, primitive communist society. Using the related concepts of overdetermination and contradiction, it then shows the eruption of a variety of class and non-class conflicts as part of the uneven development of that society. While the approach of this dissertation represents a new and different way to study the development of a primitive communist society, it is also able to propose a solution to a dilemma that has long existed within the historical tradition of Marxism. The dilemma has been to square Marx's basic notion that class struggles provide an indispensible key to understanding social change and social transitions with the transition from primitive communism where, presumably, there are no classes and hence no class struggles. The present study of the Wolof permits a distinctively Marxian analysis of the transition out of primitive communism, an analysis able to pinpoint the contributions of class struggles to that transition.
JENSEN, ROLF WARREN, "DEVELOPMENT AND CHANGE IN THE WOLOF SOCIAL FORMATION: A STUDY OF PRIMITIVE COMMUNISM" (1981). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI8201349.