The Vanishing Hectare: Property and Value in Postsocialist Transylvania / Edition 1

The Vanishing Hectare: Property and Value in Postsocialist Transylvania / Edition 1

by Katherine Verdery
     
 

ISBN-10: 0801488699

ISBN-13: 9780801488696

Pub. Date: 12/15/2003

Publisher: Cornell University Press

In most countries in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, the fall of communism opened up the possibility for individuals to acquire land. Based on Katherine Verdery's extensive fieldwork between 1990 and 2001, The Vanishing Hectare explores the importance of land and land ownership to the people of one Transylvanian community, Aurel Vlaicu. Verdery

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Overview

In most countries in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, the fall of communism opened up the possibility for individuals to acquire land. Based on Katherine Verdery's extensive fieldwork between 1990 and 2001, The Vanishing Hectare explores the importance of land and land ownership to the people of one Transylvanian community, Aurel Vlaicu. Verdery traces how collectivized land was transformed into private property, how land was valued, what the new owners were able to do with it, and what it signified to each of the different groups vying for land rights.

Verdery tells this story about transforming socialist property forms in a global context, showing the fruitfulness of conceptualizing property as a political symbol, as a complex of social relations among people and things, and as a process of assigning value. This book is a window on rural life after socialism but it also provides a framework for assessing the neo-liberal economic policies that have prevailed elsewhere, such as in Latin America. Verdery shows how the trajectory of property after socialism was deeply conditioned by the forms property took in socialism itself; this is in contrast to the image of a "tabula rasa" that governed much thinking about post-socialist property reform.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780801488696
Publisher:
Cornell University Press
Publication date:
12/15/2003
Series:
Culture and Society after Socialism Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
448
Sales rank:
971,868
Product dimensions:
6.13(w) x 9.25(h) x (d)

Related Subjects

Table of Contents

Illustrations
Preface
Acknowledgments
Note on Pronunciation, Romanian Names, Terms, and Translations
Introduction: Property, Value, and Global Transformation1
Pt. IMaking, Unmaking, and Remarking Owners33
1Property in Socialism: Collectivization, Administrative Rights, and the Circulation of Goods40
2Unmaking Socialist Agriculture: Contexts of Restitution in the 1990s77
3How Hectares Vanished: Decollectivization Politics in Vlaicu116
4New Kin, New Serfs, New Masters: Transformed Social Relations and the Meanings of Land158
Pt. IIRealizing the Powers of Ownership185
5The Death of a Peasantry: From Smallholders to Rentiers190
6Of Credits and Credibility: The Rise and Fall of the Vlaicu Association229
7The Dynamics of Decapitalization: The Fate of Vlaicu's State Farms273
8From Debts to Dallas: Value Transformation and the Rise of Supertenants310
Conclusion: Property Processes and Effects346
AppInventory of Objects Moved from the Collective Farm Patrimony into the Vlaicu Association at Its Founding, 1992365
Notes367
Glossary391
References393
Index411

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