1st Edition

Reforming Land and Resource Use in South Africa Impact on Livelihoods

Edited By Paul Hebinck, Charlie Shackleton Copyright 2011
    352 Pages 18 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    352 Pages 18 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book debates the emergent proprieties of rural and peri-urban South Africa since land and agrarian reforms were initiated after the transition to democracy in 1994. It explores how these reforms have broadened options for the use of land and natural resources. Reform-minded policies in South Africa have assumed that if access to land and other natural resources is less problematic, the use of these resources would be intensified which in turn would alter the structure and dynamic of rural and urban poverty. Reforming Land and Resource Use in South Africa examines in detail, and from several disciplinary perspectives, whether and how this has occurred, and if not, why not.

    A key argument that this collection pursues is whether land reform has resulted in transformed use of natural (i.e. land, crops, cattle, rangeland, wild products etc.) and other strategic resources (labour, knowledge, institutions, networks etc.), and the value communities and household place on them. The contributions explore a combination of new or alternative meanings of land, including a look beyond crops and cattle per se to include the collection and selling of wild products, as well as a discussion of how land for agriculture has become redefined by land reform beneficiaries as urban land, for settlement and urban employment opportunities, in addition to urban-based agricultural activities.

    Unlike most analyses and commentaries on land reform, this book pursues an analysis of land reform dynamics at various levels of aggregation. National and regional level analyses of poverty and the ramifications of the property clause are combined with analyses at disaggregate levels such as the land reform project or village. The book will be of interest to both researchers and policy makers with an interest in rural development and social change.

    1. Livelihoods, resources and land reform Paul Hebinck and Charlie Shackleton 2. Anger, policy, data: perspectives on South Africa’s poverty question Michael Aliber 3. Land reform and poverty reduction in South Africa Edward Lahiff 4. What is a ‘smallholder’? Class-analytic perspectives on small-scale farming and agrarian reform in South Africa Ben Cousins 5. Land reform and its effect on livelihoods in the Northern Cape Province of South Africa Alastair Bradstock 6. Contested livelihoods at the interface? Ethnographic explorations of two land restitution cases in rural South Africa Yves van Leynseele and Paul Hebinck 7. Liberation betrayed: the case of continued evictions of farm dwellers in the ‘new’ South Africa Teresa Yates 8. Poverty and insecurity of farm workers and dwellers in post-apartheid South Africa Lali Naidoo 9. exploring the role of wild natural resources in poverty alleviation with an emphasis on South Africa Sheona Shackleton and Charlie Shackleton 10. Born-frees and worn trees: home grown medicinal plants and poverty Michelle Cocks, Madeleen Husselman and Tony Dold 11. The contribution of municipal commonage to land reform and poverty alleviation in South Africa: a case study of the Eastern Cape Claire Martens 12. Poverty, land and food production in South African townships Magriet Coetzee and Wim van Averbeke 13. Where are they now? Welfare, development and marginalisation in a former Bantustan settlement in the Eastern Cape, post 1994 Chris de Wet 14. Land and resource reform in South Africa: multiple realities, contradictions and paradigm shifts Paul Hebinck and Charlie Shackleton 


    Paul Hebinck is Associate Professor of Rural Development Sociology at Wageningen University, The Netherlands and adjunct Professor at the University of Fort Hare, South Africa.

    Charlie Shackleton is Professor of Environmental Science at Rhodes University, South Africa.