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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Revealing Gendered Landscapes: Indigenous Female Knowledge and Agroforestry of African Shea
Author:Carney, Judith A.ISNI
Periodical:Canadian Journal of African Studies
Geographic terms:Sahel
Burkina Faso
Subjects:shea nuts
gender division of labour
indigenous knowledge
Women's Issues
Agriculture, Natural Resources and the Environment
Development and Technology
Economics and Trade
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Cultural Roles
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/25433880
Abstract:This paper examines the indigenous knowledge surrounding shea ('Vitellaria paradoxa') agroforestry in the Sudano-Sahelian area of West Africa. Emphasis is placed on the female expertise that guides the transformation of shea nuts into oil and the significance of the knowledge held by women for the tree's management and selection. First, the paper presents a historical overview that traces the processing, management and significance of 'V. paradoxa' in West Africa since the 14th century. Second, it details the gendered management of shea parklands, which involves the selection and conservation of trees with desired characteristics, the sociocultural conventions that mediate access to and conservation of 'V. paradoxa', as well as the female knowledge entailed in nut processing. Finally, the paper looks at shea's current incorporation into the global economy, especially the role of development assistance in promoting shea butter exports. Fieldwork was conducted in Burkina Faso in 2001, and additional fieldwork took place in Gambia in 2004. Bibliogr., ref., sum. in French. [ASC Leiden abstract]