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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The sharecropping economy on the South African highveld in the early twentieth century
Author:Keegan, Timothy
Periodical:The Journal of Peasant Studies
Geographic term:South Africa
External link:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/03066158308438205
Abstract:Even in the white-settled arable highveld of South Africa, the primary producers feeding the growing urban centres in the early, years of industrialisation were in large part black sharecropping tenants operating with different degrees of independence from white landlord control. This article investigates the class forces which shaped this sharecropping economy and its significance in the eventual emergence of white capitalist agriculture. The geographical focus is on the arable highveld, the region in which the rising industrial heartland of South Africa - the Witwatersrand gold fields including the city of Johannesburg - was situated. It was also a region which was ecologically suited to grain production for the rapidly expanding urban markets which developed first at the Kimberley diamond fields in the 1870s, and more importantly on the Witwatersrand from the 1880s onwards. The relationship between sharecropping enterprises on the farms and primitive accumulation amongst white landlords is fundamental to an understanding of the nature of capitalist development in South African agriculture. Notes, ref.