Much of the recent writing on peasants and rural development is based on a litical economy model. This approach, best exemplified by Samuel Popkin's The adtional Peasant, sees the peasant as a self-interested rational actor, and develops a unchaning investment logic to explain economic and political decisions. It is a more sophiticated approach than earlier attempts at applying a political economy model because it recognizes that income-maximization is not the exclusive means for self-improvement. Equally important, it also recognizes that, although individuals tend to be cient in their use of resources, problems of cooperation and organization often preview villages from being economically efficient. Although this type of research tends to as empirical as earlier, more anthropologically oriented work, it promises to be me helpful in building generalizable theory about peasants, and in aiding practitioners rural development.