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The Politics of Harmony
Land Dispute Strategies in Swaziland

Part of African Studies

  • Date Published: March 2006
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521024686

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  • Laurel Rose analyses how traditional ruling elites in Swaziland, as in other parts of Africa, use harmony ideologies to downplay and resolve land disputes. Such disputes could be used by foreign development agents or indigenous new élites as justification for implementing land tenure changes, including a reduction of traditional elites' power based upon land control. Swazi commoners accept the cultural value and legitimacy of most harmony ideologies, but they use strategies when disputing about particular land rights to produce more favourable outcomes. This book is unusual in its focus on political rather than economic dimensions of land tenure and disputes. It searches for links between individual concerns with land use rights and national concerns with land policy. It also examines gender and leadership issues associated with land, showing how women and new élites threaten land interests of men and traditional leaders.

    • Analyses the role of harmony ideologies in land disputes among the traditional elites in Swaziland
    • Unusually the book focuses on the political rather than economic aspects of land tenure and disputes
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    Product details

    • Date Published: March 2006
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521024686
    • length: 256 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.401kg
    • contains: 3 b/w illus. 14 maps 7 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Acknowledgements
    Introduction
    Part I. National and Local Settings:
    1. The geographical, historical, political, and social bases of customary land tenure relations
    2. The legal structure for customary land tenure relations
    3. Two communities: arenas for land disputes
    Part II. Harmony and Land:
    4. The politics of harmony: land dispute strategies
    5. Land dispute cases in the political hierarchy
    6. 'A woman is like a field': women's land dispute strategies
    7. 'How could I take my land dispute to the person with the stick?': elites' land dispute strategies. 8. Conclusions
    Appendix
    Notes
    References
    Index.

  • Author

    Laurel L. Rose

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