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      The Agrarian question and politics in the ‘New’ South Africa

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            Abstract

            New right and neo‐liberal ‘development’ discourses have heavily impacted on the politics of agrarian restructuring in South Africa. Mechanisms for resolving agrarian contradictions are being discussed and presented as abstract planning decisions to be made by agricultural and rural development experts. This legitimation of ‘neo‐classicism’, if unchallenged, will reproduce and support current neo‐apartheid forms of restructuring.

            In this article, we argue for a process of agrarian transformation where rural political mobilisation and the establishment of viable agricultural production systems are complementary. The paper is not an exercise in proposing specific (top‐down) ‘solutions’ or ‘models’, which has become a recent pre‐occupation in South Africa. Rather, we write with the objective of supporting a process whereby democratic transformation in rural South Africa remains possible.

            Content

            Author and article information

            Journal
            crea20
            CREA
            Review of African Political Economy
            Review of African Political Economy
            0305-6244
            1740-1720
            July 1993
            : 20
            : 57
            : 29-45
            Affiliations
            a Department of Sociology , University of Witwatersrand , South Africa
            b Department of Geology and Geography , West Virginia University , USA
            Article
            8704002 Review of African Political Economy, Vol. 20, No. 57, July 1993, pp. 29-45
            10.1080/03056249308704002
            3e2e679e-e2ac-4972-9cd8-c569d705cf6f

            All content is freely available without charge to users or their institutions. Users are allowed to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of the articles in this journal without asking prior permission of the publisher or the author. Articles published in the journal are distributed under a http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

            History
            Page count
            Figures: 0, Tables: 0, References: 25, Pages: 17
            Categories
            Original Articles

            Sociology,Economic development,Political science,Labor & Demographic economics,Political economics,Africa

            Bibliographic Note

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            2. Bauman R. . 1992. . ‘Property Rights in the Canadian Constitutional Context’. In: . Land and Property Rights Conference; . . 1992 ; . Centre For Applied Legal Studies, University of the Witwatersrand. .

            3. Bernstein H. . 1992. . ‘Agrarian Reform in South Africa: Who? What? Where?’. In: . paper presented at the Ruth First Memorial Colloquium; . August 17–18– 1992 ; . University of the Western Cape. .

            4. Brand S S, Christodoulou N T, Van Rooyen C J and Vink N. . 1991. . Agriculture and Redistribution: A Growth with Equity Approach . , Development Bank of Southern Africa. .

            5. Budlender G. . 1992. . ‘The Right to Equitable Access to Land’. In: . Land and Property Rights Conference; . . 1992 ; . Centre for Applied Legal Studies, University of the Witwatersrand. .

            6. Bundy C. . 1984. . ‘Land and Liberation: The South African National Liberation Movements and the Agrarian Question, 1920s–1960s’. . Review of African Political Economy . , Vol. 29:

            7. Cheru F. . 1989. . The Silent Revolution in Africa . , London : : Zed. .

            8. Cohen R. . 1992. . ‘Civil Society Theory and the Politics of Transition in South Africa’. . Review of African Political Economy . , Vol. 55:

            9. Cousins B, Weiner D and Amin N. . 1992. . ‘Social Differentiation in the Communal Lands of Zimbabwe’. . Review of African Political Economy . , Vol. 53:

            10. Cross C. . 1992. . “‘Structuring Land Tenure in a New Society: The Property Rights Question in Rural African Land Systems’. ”. Durban : : Rural‐Urban Studies Unit, Centre for Social and Development Studies, University of Natal. .

            11. De Klerk M. . 1992. . ‘Addressing Land Hunger: Choices for Supplying the land’. In: . paper prepared for the Workshop on Agriculture and Apartheid: South African Agrarian Transformation in Historical and Contemporary Perspective; . May. 1992 ; . Kingston Ontario : : Queen's University. .

            12. Fine R. . 1992. . ‘Civil Society Theory and the Politics of Transition in South Africa’. . Review of African Political Economy . , Vol. 55:

            13. Goodman D and Redclift M. . 1991. . Refashioning Nature: Food, Ecology and Culture . , New York : : Routledge. .

            14. Levin R. . 1990. . ‘Is this the Swazi Way? State Democracy and the land Question’. . Transformation . , Vol. 13:

            15. Levin R and Neocosmos M. . 1989. . ‘The Agrarian Question and Class Contradictions in South Africa: Some Theoretical Considerations’. . Journal of Peasant Studies . , Vol. 16((2))

            16. Levin R and Weiner D. . 1991. . “‘The Agrarian Question and Emergence of Conflicting Agricultural Strategies in South Africa’. ”. In Towards a New Agrarian Democratic Order . , (SAERT Project). Edited by: Matlhape A and Munz A. . Amsterdam :

            17. Mamdani M. . 1987. . ‘Extreme but not Exceptional: Towards an Analysis of the Agrarian Question in Uganda’. . Journal of Peasant Studies . , Vol. 23((4))

            18. Mamdani M. . 1988. . “‘Contradictory Class Perspectives on the Question of Democracy: the case of Uganda’. ”. In Popular Struggles for Democracy in Africa . , Edited by: Nyong'o P Anyang’. . London : : Zed. .

            19. Mamdani M. . 1992. . “‘Research and Transformation: Reflections on a Visit to South Africa’. ”. Kampala, Uganda : : Centre for Basic Research. .

            20. Marcus T. . 1991. . “‘Palace Coup on the Land: The Government's Land Reform Package Up Against the Need for Fundamental Change’. ”. Association of Sociologists of South Africa Annual Conference, University of Cape Town. .

            21. Pickles J and Weiner D. . 1991. . ‘Rural and Regional Restructuring in South Africa’. . Special Issue of Antipode . , Vol. 23((1))

            22. Republic of South Africa. . 1991. . “‘White Paper on Land Reform’. ”. Pretoria : : Government Printer. .

            23. Shivji I. . 1991. . ‘The Democracy Debate in Africa: Tanzania’. . Review of African Political Economy . , Vol. 50:

            24. Weiner D. . 1989. . ‘Agricultural Restructuring in South Africa and Zimbabwe’. . Development and Change . , Vol. 20((3))

            25. Weiner D and Levin R.. 1991. . ‘Land and Agrarian Transition in South Africa’. . Antipode . , Vol. 23((1))

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