Listening to Grinw: Everyday Political Discussions about Mali's Democratic Recovery


ACLS Fellowship Program


Political Science


This book project explores citizens’ attitudes toward three policy problems central to Mali’s democratic recovery: democracy and governance, allegiance to the state and other subgroups, and social cohesion. It relies on ethnographic and focus-group methodology to collect data on approximately 80 diverse “grinw,” political discussion groups found across the country. The research design draws on an important lesson emerging from the Malian crisis. Without exploring citizen attitudes toward institutions, scholars of democracy risk underestimating the fragility undergirding procedural democratic façades.