The Fragility of Empowerment: Changing Gender Relations in a Zimbabwean Resettlement Area

Citation:

Addison, Lincoln. 2019. “The Fragility of Empowerment: Changing Gender Relations in a Zimbabwean Resettlement Area.” Review of African Political Economy 46 (159): 101–16.

Author: Lincoln Addison

Abstract:

This article examines the fragility of women's empowerment in Sovelele, a resettlement area established through Zimbabwe's Fast Track Land Reform programme. Compared to their lives before resettlement, married women have larger plots allocated to them by husbands, exercise a higher degree of control over surplus grain and experience more joint use of resources. Single women can more easily buy and hold land in their own right. Yet, these gains are fragile because they arise out of largely unintended and changing circumstances, including the spatial dynamics of resettlement, permit-based land tenure, limited market integration and labour shortage. While attention to the conditions underlying empowerment reveals its fragility, it is not equally fragile for all women. Some women's gains may prove more resilient than others because they rest upon a deeper renegotiation of gender relations.

Keywords: land reform, gender, Zimbabwe, agricultural child labor, climate smart agriculture (CSA)

Topics: Agriculture, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Land Tenure, Rights, Land Rights Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Zimbabwe

Year: 2019

© 2021 CONSORTIUM ON GENDER, SECURITY & HUMAN RIGHTSLEGAL STATEMENT All photographs used on this site, and any materials posted on it, are the property of their respective owners, and are used by permission. Photographs: The images used on the site may not be downloaded, used, or reproduced in any way without the permission of the owner of the image. Materials: Visitors to the site are welcome to peruse the materials posted for their own research or for educational purposes. These materials, whether the property of the Consortium or of another, may only be reproduced with the permission of the owner of the material. This website contains copyrighted materials. The Consortium believes that any use of copyrighted material on this site is both permissive and in accordance with the Fair Use doctrine of 17 U.S.C. § 107. If, however, you believe that your intellectual property rights have been violated, please contact the Consortium at info@genderandsecurity.org.