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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The local politics of Ethiopia's green revolution in South Wollo
Author:Adem, Teferi AbateISNI
Periodical:African Studies Review (ISSN 1555-2462)
Geographic term:Ethiopia
Subjects:agricultural extension
agricultural development
small farms
local politics
Abstract:This article argues that Ethiopia's agricultural extension programme, which received more government funding and donor support than other similar programmes in Africa, reinforced the rural presence and authoritarian powers of the ruling party while largely failing to improve smallholder agriculture. The principal reason for this outcome has to do with the systematic entanglement of the Green Revolution package delivery system with the immediate goal of guaranteeing the party's political security. In one Amharic-speaking community that provided ethnographic information for this article, overzealous party leaders rewarded supporters at the expense of imagined opponents. This distortion, coupled with a culturally embedded concept of success (defined as upward mobility), caused pervasive fear, insecurity, suspicion, and rivalry among farmers. Not surprisingly, this insecurity has a deleterious effect on hardworking farmers. The article suggests that any meaningful attempt at improving the programme must recognize the centrality of politics, especially at the community and household levels, where parochial interests interface with cultural expectations. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract]