The pillage of sustainablility in Eritrea, 1600s-1990s : rural communities and the creeping shadows of hegemony /
Niaz Murtaza.
Westport, CT : Greenwood Press, 1998.
xiv, 203 p. : ill. ; 25 cm.
0313306338 (alk. paper)
More Details
Westport, CT : Greenwood Press, 1998.
0313306338 (alk. paper)
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Niaz Murtaza is a Post-Graduate Researcher in International Rural Development at the University of California at Berkeley
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1999-01:
Murtaza, a Pakistani and a postgraduate researcher in international rural development (Univ. of California, Berkeley), converted his doctoral dissertation into a closely printed monograph on beleaguered Eritrean ruralism. His research in Eritrea led to his attempted linkage of hegemonic forces and the well-being of rural communities to discover locally appropriate policies that would obtain rural sustainability. The background included Eritrea's various regions, ethnic groups, and production systems. In the precolonial period (pre-1889), despite marked ethnic conflicts and brutalities, lower intrusiveness of human threats permitted highly sustainable rural production systems. Italian colonialism (1889-1952) brought greater and more permanent, though deferred, damage. The Ethiopian period (1952-91) and the deferred impact of Italian-era events caused precipitous decline in sustainable rural production systems. The postindependence period (1991- ) may include unwise submissiveness to the Food and Agriculture Organization and World Bank, and entanglement in US strategic interests. Fundamentally, every village must control its resources and contribute to decision making for projects. Good bibliography and index, two maps, many intriguing figures and tables. Upper-division undergraduates and above. E. E. Beauregard; emeritus, University of Dayton
Review Quotes
'œ[T]his is a clearly organized and valuable study that provides a good starting point for further inquiry. Murtaza's striving to identify the nexus between the policies of hegemonic actors and the downward trajectory of indigenous social systems is revealing. His contention that famine and poverty are consequences of policy rather than a dictate of nature is salutatory. The numerous graphs and statistical tables are instructive. Morevoer, the book comes at an opportune time, serving as a clarion call not only against the horrifying war currently unfolding in the region, but also the long-term threat it poses to the viabilty of rural communities.'' African Studies Quarterly
'œMurran's work is exciting for its originality and insight in to the new Eritrean state and the challenges it faces as a predominantly agricultural and pastoral society entering the fray of globally-determined and locally-implemented capitalist processes. His serious attention to the extensive variation within and between rural Eritrean communities is fascinating and commendable. Moreover, his critical approach to the new Eritrean state does not engage in the political axe-grinding characterizing too much Horn of Africa scholarship.'' Northeast African Studies
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, January 1999
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Unpaid Annotation
Demonstrates an approach, using Eritrea as a case study, for carrying out an in-depth analysis of the sustainability of traditional rural communities, the impact of local and external actors on them, and the use of the analysis to design collaborative and incremental relief and development policies and programs.
Long Description
Because of its history and location, Eritrea is an ideal example for a study of the sustainability of traditional rural communities and the impact of local and external actors on them. This book provides a lucid account of the pillage of rural sustainability under modern hegemonic conditions. It traces the manner in which the imprints left by European rule were accentuated during Ethiopian control. These legacies continue to haunt rural communities after independence in the shape of resource shortages, the dominance of western civilization, and the modernization-based policies of the ruling Eritrean class which originated under European rule.
Table of Contents
Figures, Maps, and Tablesp. vii
Abbreviations and Foreign Termsp. xi
Acknowledgmentsp. xiii
Sustainability and Rural Communities: Theoretical Issuesp. 1
Nature-Society Interaction: Variations across Eritreap. 27
Contested Sovereignties, Pre-1890: Primitive Hegemony and Local Semi-Autonomyp. 43
European Colonization, 1890-1952: The Subjugation to Modern Hegemonyp. 55
Ethiopian Annexation, 1952-1991: Confluence of Primitive and Modern Hegemonyp. 73
Eritrean Self-Rule, 1991-1997: Past Legacies, New Threatsp. 97
Livelihoods within the Highlands, 1880s-1990s: The Gradual Rupturep. 111
Livelihoods within the Lowlands, 1880s-1990s: Potential Despite Plunderp. 149
The Quest for Sustainability--Summary and Conclusionsp. 179
Referencesp. 195
Indexp. 201
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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