Joseph Hanlon is Technology Faculty, The Open University, UK. Jeannette Manjengwa is Deputy Director at the Institute for Environmental Studies, UK. Teresa Smart is Visiting Fellow at the Institute of Education, University of London.
This book provides a panoramic assessment of the land question in Zimbabwe over the last century, tracing how European settler land grabbing and farming was built through state subsidies and protection against black peasants and external markets. It examines how land reform since 1980 has reversed this trajectory of land ownership and agrarian development, and provided live narratives on the struggles of various classes of people to secure land and farm inputs, and gain access to markets, while revealing their hopes and pride as new farmers. Although it is critical about various deficiencies of the fast track land reform process and the subsequent agrarian reforms, it represents one of the few comprehensive renditions of the multi-faceted progressive outcomes of these reforms, which bring life to the social transformation underway and the challenges that remain. The authors combine various research approaches in their investigation and a laud writing style, with an extensive reading of the relevant literature cutting across the ideological and political divide of the narratives, before independence and since 2000. It is a must read for scholars and lay people alike.