segmentary states

segmentary states

forms of STATE society, with a central political authority and specialized political institutions including administrative staff, but having an underlying 'segmentary’ structure (compare SEGMENTARY SOCIETIES), in which political allegiances are based on lineage groups, or on related forms of client-patron relations (see Southall, 1954). A segmentary structure, in which primary loyalty is to the lineage group rather than the state, tends to produce somewhat fragile state forms. Segmentary states were a common form of state in precolonial Africa.
References in periodicals archive ?
The second school of thought on the other hand, believed that the amalgamation was a major factor in the transformation of Nigeria from segmentary states to a virile nation, recognizable as an entity among the comity of nations globally.
Schnepel's notion of the multi-centered state derives its inspiration from Burton Stein's "segmentary states" model (1977), in which power is not hierarchical in any strict sense but pyramidal.