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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Upland and Swamp Rice Farming Systems in Sierra Leone: The Social Context of Technological Change
Authors:Johnny, Michael
Karimu, John
Richards, PaulISNI
Periodical:Africa: Journal of the International African Institute
Geographic term:Sierra Leone
Agriculture, Natural Resources and the Environment
Development and Technology
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Labor and Employment
External links:https://www.jstor.org/stable/1158829
Abstract:An examination of swamp and upland rice farming systems illustrates the interaction between technology and society in present-day rural Sierra Leone. The aim is to show that technology cannot be divorced from its social context, and is unlikely to have an independent determinative role to play in the process of social change. Two 'versions' of the case for and against intensive swamp cultivation are examined, representing the viewpoint of the development agencies and the small farmer in turn. Analysis of the critical issue of the organisation of labour inputs into the respective farming systems indicates that 'work is 'about' social transaction as much as material production' and that recent changes in rice production make little sense unless considered in relation to long-term currents in Sierra Leone's economic history. Disregard for the historical dimension is likely to have serious consequences for present planning policy initiatives. Fig., note, ref., tab., French sum.