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Sender, John and Cramer, Christopher (2021) 'Desperate, deceived and disappointed: women’s lives and labour in rural Ethiopia and Uganda.' Journal of Contemporary African Studies, 40 (2). pp. 153-171.

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Life history interviews from Ethiopia and Uganda, organised around experiences of wage labour, provide rich evidence on the working conditions of many poor, rural women and on what leads them to work for wages. The life histories confirm and illuminate arguments based on large-scale socio-economic surveys carried out in these two countries. Further, findings from the surveys and life histories challenge an influential literature that not only celebrates women’s agency in poor rural areas, but also remains committed to methodological individualism and ideas of choice. Drawing on primary and secondary evidence from Africa (and elsewhere), we insist that violent coercion and catastrophe trump maximising rational selection among alternatives; that the social is fundamental to individual behaviour; and the non-market is key to (labour) market participation. We also provide a brief discussion of the policy implications of this research.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Political Science and International Relations, Development, Geography, Planning and Development
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Department of Development Studies
ISSN: 02589001
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
SWORD Depositor: JISC Publications Router
Date Deposited: 26 Apr 2022 18:23
Funders: Leverhulme Trust

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