Ryan Colton

Ryan Colton

Department of African Studies and Anthropology
Doctoral Researcher

Contact details

PhD title: Military Governments in Ghana, 1972-1992 - A Social History of Institutions and Ideologies
Supervisor: Dr Kate Skinner and Professor Nic Cheeseman
PhD African Studies and Anthropology


  • BA History (University of Warwick)
  • MA Modern History (University of Warwick)


  • 2014-17 - BA History (University of Warwick)
  • 2017-18 - MA Modern History (University of Warwick)
  • 2019- - PhD African Studies and Anthropology (University of Birmingham)


  • 2021 and 2023 - Seminar Tutor for the History of Africa and its Diasporas (HAD) module.


My research focusses on the relationship between military governments and civilians in Ghana between 1972 and 1992, with a particular emphasis on the governments led by Colonel Acheampong and Flight-Lieutenant Jerry John Rawlings. I investigate how military regimes governed and how civilians were able to engage and interact with them. Looking at local, regional and international factors, I am interested in how military governments promoted their own legitimacy and attempted increase production by promoting new forms of discipline on the populations they governed, and how civilians attempted to promote their own interests within undemocratic structures.