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Durham e-Theses
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'A Kind of Magic' - The Political Marketing of the African National Congress

RANCHOD, RUSHIL,ARVIND (2012) 'A Kind of Magic' - The Political Marketing of the African National Congress. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



This thesis examines the political marketing of the African National Congress (ANC) around seminal political events between 1955 and 2009, and the relationship between such marketing and its strategic behaviour in the political sphere. Further, the analysis examines the means by which these techniques located the ANC at the centre of liberation and post-independent political narratives and explores and posits a basis for understanding the behaviour of the ANC and leading actors in the political sphere. The thesis explicates the nature of the continuities and discontinuities in the ANC discursive forms of political exchange and interaction and problematises the theoretical underpinnings of political marketing through the case of the ANC in South Africa. The thesis employs a broad understanding of political marketing to include such activities as publicity, promotion and propaganda. It extends its theoretical and conceptual remit beyond purely scientific and positivist approaches to understanding political persuasion and endows marketing with a strongly ‘cultural’ aspect. In doing so, greater consideration is afforded to the complex of influences that over time have come to inform the discursive and representational registers of the ANC. Drawing on a range of archival sources obtained during fieldwork in South Africa, this thesis contributes to the study of South African politics by reconceptualising the politics of the ANC through the lens of political marketing. It contributes to the theory of political marketing by using the South African case to address the theoretical blind-spots and challenge its western-centric notion of the political market. Centred on the themes on of liberation, political culture and spectacle, the thesis enriches the understanding of each through the case of the ANC. As such, the thesis provides a deeper understanding of the social and cultural bases of political change in a post-colonial and post-apartheid setting.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Social Sciences and Health > Geography, Department of
Thesis Date:2012
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:10 May 2012 15:59

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