The Politics of Harmony: Land Dispute Strategies in Swazilandby Laurel L. Rose, Rose Laurel L.
Pub. Date: 03/31/2006
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Laurel Rose analyzes 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 elites 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 adopt various strategies when disputing about particular land rights in order to produce more favorable 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 elites threaten land interests of men and traditional leaders.
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.
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