Books  Sustainable Development  Agriculture & Food 

Roots in the African Dust: Sustaining the Sub-Saharan Drylands

By: Michael Mortimore

219 pages, B/w photos, illus, figs, tabs, maps

Cambridge University Press

Paperback | Sep 1998 | #85652 | ISBN: 0521457858
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £23.99 $29/€27 approx
Hardback | Sep 1998 | #85651 | ISBN: 0521451736
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £71.99 $88/€81 approx

About this book

The image of Africa in the modern world has come to be shaped by perceptions of the drylands and their problems of poverty, drought, degradation, and famine. Michael Mortimore offers an alternative and revisionist thesis, dismissing on theoretical and empirical grounds the conventional view of runaway desertification, driven by population growth and inappropriate land use. In its place he suggests a more optimistic model of sustainable land use, based on researched case studies from East and West Africa where indigenous technological adaptation has put population growth and market opportunities to advantage. He also proposes a more appropriate set of policy priorities to support dryland peoples in their efforts to sustain land and livelihoods.

'! admirably demonstrates how both herders and farmers recognise and act upon environmental variability in their short and long-term decision making.' Cambridge Anthropology


1. Introduction; 2. Global perspectives on Africa's drylands; 3. A smallholder's perspective; 4. Risk in the rangelands; 5. Risk for the farmer; 6. Risk for the household; 7. Degradation; 8. Intensification; 9. Conservation; 10. Systems in transition.

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