1st Edition

Development from Within Survival in Rural Africa

Edited By D. R. F. Taylor, Fiona Mackenzie Copyright 1992
    308 Pages
    by Routledge

    The decade of 1980s was one of crisis for Africa. Neither African governments nor development agencies made a significant impact on the quality of life of rural people. The enormous range of contexts in Africa — social, economic, political, cultural, and environmental — limits the value of the search for universal solutions to endemic problems. First published in 1992, Development from Within examines an alternative framework, arguing for flexibility and specificity. The authors use case studies to explore the complex social relationships of power — from the household to the state. They argue for the knowledge and skill of African people and illustrate the diverse means by which men and women in rural Africa struggle to survive.

    This book will be a beneficial read for students and researchers of African studies, development studies, economics, and sociology. 

    1. Development from within? The struggle to survive 2. Local farmer organizations and rural development in Zimbabwe 3. The indigenous responses of a Ghanian rural community to seasonal food supply cycles and the socio-environmental stresses of the 1980s 4. The co-operative credit union movement in north-western Ghana: Development agent or agent of incorporation? 5. Survival in rural Africa: The salt co-operatives in Ada district, Ghana 6. Local coping strategies in Machakos District, Kenya 7. Household based tree planting activities for fuelwood supply in rural Kenya 8. Local coping strategies in Dodoma district, Tanzania 9. The informal sector: A strategy for survival in Tanzania 10. Development from within and survival in rural Africa: A synthesis of theory and practice


    D. R. F. Taylor is Chancellor’s Distinguished Research Professor of International Affairs, Geography and Environmental Studies, and Director of the Geomatics and Cartographic Research Centre at Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada. In December 2021, he was appointed Officer of the Order of Canada. He is recipient of the Killam Prize for the Social Sciences, Canada’s highest academic honour (2014).  

    Fiona Mackenzie is Professor Emeritus of Geography and Environmental Studies at Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada. Her research has focused on issues to do with land and the environment in Sub Saharan Africa. She has worked with both archival sources and personal narratives to reconstruct histories of land and labour in rural Kenya, recognising differences of race, class and gender in these histories.