Lessons learned from research on 'the African Poor' by Carpenter1 [WorldCat.org]
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Klassenbildung im ländlichen Nigeria : d. Beisp. d. Savannenbauern in Nupeland.

by Dirk Kohnert

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Lessons learned from research on 'the African Poor'   (2014-07-14)


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by Carpenter1

The increasing number of African small-holders who do not dispose over the necessary resources to cover even their basic needs has been growing to alarming dimensions in the past decades. Contrary to widespread views, the increasing poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa is due less to natural but to social constraints of development. This has been demonstrated by a case study on the peasantry in Northern Nigeria in the 1970s. The focus of this study is on socio-economic stratification and class-relations, because one major cause of the marginalization of the African peasantry is considered to be the differentiation-process within the peasantry itself.
The underlying thesis of emerging rural-capitalist relations of production in Nigeria as an aftermath of the 'oilboom' of the 1970s has been backed by three lines of argumentation: First, by a critical review of literature on class-concepts concerning Africa and on methods to measure social stratification in the countryside. Second, by an analysis of the origins of rural class-formation in Nupeland or Bida Emirate, (now Niger State) Northern Nigeria, in pre- and post-colonial times. And third, by a survey of the socio-economic stratification among peasants in four Nupe villages in 1975/76, backed by econometric analysis. The findings ensuing from this analysis may provide valuable lessons for development planners, not just in one of the Nigerian emirates itself but also in other parts of Africa.

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