Journal Article

IDS Bulletin 47.2A

Politics, Class and Development (Editorial)

Published on 8 December 2016

The State is a powerful reality and a still more powerful abstraction. An abstraction which conservatives who believe in ‘political order’ affirm; which revolutionaries hope to smash or negate; which planners and technocrats make use of in order to propound ideologies of state managed development; and the influence of which others who see it as the captive of class forces minimise.

All the essays in this issue of the IDS Bulletin attempt to penetrate behind this abstraction by looking at various state institutions in a concrete way. In concentrating on the State we may, ourselves, in conclusion contribute to the myth of its omnipotence. Development studies may be as much in need of a theory of revolutionary change as of a theory of planning.

Related Content

IDS Bulletin 47.2A


Image of Robin Luckham

Robin Luckham

Emeritus Fellow

Publication details

IDS Bulletin , volume 47, issue 2A