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Taylor & Francis
Shea Butter Republic / Edition 1

Shea Butter Republic / Edition 1

by Brenda Chalfin, Chalfin


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Shea Butter Republic / Edition 1

Shea butter (butyrospermin parkii) has been produced and sold by rural West African women and circulated on the world market as a raw material for more than a century. Shea butter has been used for cooking, making soap and candles, leatherworking, dying, as a medical and beauty aid, and most significantly, as a substitute for cocoa butter in chocolate production. Now sold in exclusive shops as a high-priced cosmetic and medicinal product, it caters to the desire of cosmopolitan customers worldwide for luxury and exotic self-indulgence. This ethnographic study traces shea from a pre- to post-industrial commodity to provide a deeper understanding of emerging trends in tropical commoditization, consumption, global economic restructuring and rural livelihoods. Also inlcludes seven maps.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780415944601
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Publication date: 02/19/2004
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.88(d)

Table of Contents

1. Indigenous Commodities and Colonial Market Reforms in Northern Ghana
2. The Culture and Politics of Shea Commercialization in the 1980s
3. Reworking Cosmopolitan Consumption: Labor, Luxury, and West African Women
4. Shea Market Reforms in the 1990s: Globalization, Liberalization, and State Survival
5. Taking Risks and Asserting Control: Female Shea Traders Confront Private Exporters
6. Shea Butter Production and Female Work Routines: The Culture of Cooperation

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