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Title:New insights on trust, honour and networking in informal entrepreneurship: Zimbabwean 'malayishas' as informal remittance couriers
Author:Nyoni, Phefumula
Periodical:Anthropology Southern Africa (ISSN 2332-3264)
Geographic term:Zimbabwe
informal sector
social networks
Abstract:This paper examines the utility of the concepts of trust and honour in understanding relations among Zimbabwean remittance couriers who are popularly known as 'malayishas'. Trust and honour are explored in relation to how they produce and sustain a culture of networking and cooperation on the one hand, and competition and conflict on the other. The paper's arguments are largely informed by P. Bourdieu's ideas on social action, particularly his emphasis on the dynamism of social action and how in practice it is manifested through various forms of capital. The study, which is based on interviews with 'malayishas' conducted in Johannesburg in November and December 2008, reveals a dynamic picture when it comes to 'malayisha'- 'malayisha' relations on the one hand, and 'malayisha'-remitter relations on the other. In the various spheres of interaction, relations are inherently informed by social, cultural and economic capital. Elements of trust and honour are evident in processes surrounding the creation and strengthening of networks and ties manifest in the remittance transportation trail. Bibliogr., notes, sum. [Journal abstract]