Narratives on Land: State-Peasant Relations Over Fast Track Land Reform in Zimbabwe


  • Bevlyne Sithole
  • Bruce Campbell
  • Dale Doré
  • Witness Kozanayi


In the last few years, slogans have become more elaborate and fervent with regards to promises of delivering land to peasants in Zimbabwean communal areas. Conditions in communal areas suggest that peasants should be highly receptive to the slogans and the narratives from which they are drawn. But empirical data from a densely settled communal area challenges the universality of the slogans and exposes their irrelevance in the context of the realities of household assets, social processes, and production systems. We suggest political relations over land between peasants and political elites in the state have resulted in disengagement by the peasants.