Gender and Plantation Labour in Africa
308 Pages
English
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Gender and Plantation Labour in Africa

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Gain access to the library to view online
Learn more
308 Pages
English

Description

This book explores the relationship between plantation labour and gender in Africa. Such a study is the more opportune because most of the existing works on plantation labour in Africa seem to have either under-studied or even ignored the changing conceptions of gender on the continent in recent times. One of the book�s major concerns is to demonstrate that the introduction of plantation labour during colonial rule in Africa has had significant consequences for gender roles and relations within and beyond the capitalist labour process. The book focuses on two tea estates in Anglophone Cameroon. A study of these estates is particularly interesting in that one of them employs mainly female pluckers while the other employs mainly male pluckers. This allows for an examination of any variations in male and female workers� modes of resistance to the control and exploitation they meet in the labour process. Such a comparative analysis is helpful in assessing the widespread managerial assumption on tea estates that female pluckers tend to be more productive and docile than male pluckers.

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Published by
Published 27 July 2012
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EAN13 9789956728251
Language English
Document size 3 MB

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Exrait

Gender and Plantation Labour in Africa The Story of Tea Pluckers’ Struggles in Cameroon
Piet Konings
Gender and Plantation Labour in Africa
Langaa & African Studies Centre
Gender and Plantation Labour in Africa The Story of Tea Pluckers’ Struggles in Cameroon
Piet Konings
Langaa Research and Publishing Common Initiative Group PO Box 902 Mankon Bamenda North West Region Cameroon Phone +237 33 07 34 69 / 33 36 14 02 LangaaGrp@gmail.com http://www.langaa-rpcig.net www.africanbookscollective.com/publishers/langaa-rpcig
African Studies Centre P.O. Box 9555 2300 RB Leiden The Netherlands asc@ascleiden.nl http://www.ascleiden.nl
ISBN: 9956-727-30-X
© Langaa & African Studies Centre, 2012
Contents
Acknowledgements ...................................................................................ix List of Tables .........................................................................................xi Abbreviations .......................................................................................xiii Map of Cameroon ................................................................................xv
 1
Gender and labour on Cameroon’s tea estates Introduction ........................................................................................... 1 Gender in Africa ................................................................................... 2 Gender and tea plucking in Anglophone Cameroon ..................... 6 Gender and labour resistance on Anglophone Cameroon’s tea estates ....................................................................................... 13 Organisation of the book and research methodology ............... 19
 2and marketing policies on Cameroon’s ea Production states Introduction ........................................................................................ 21 Tea production in Cameroon .......................................................... 21 Tea marketing in Cameroon ............................................................ 31
Part I: The Tole Tea Estate  3 Female workers Introduction ........................................................................................ 39 Managerial option for female workers .......................................... 39 Ethnic/regional origin of female workers .................................... 43 Demographic characteristics of female workers ......................... 49 Remuneration of female workers .................................................. 57 Tole Tea women: Wage workers and mothers ............................ 69 Conclusion .......................................................................................... 73
 4Management of female workers Introduction ........................................................................................ 75 The physical organisation of production ...................................... 76 Managerial strategies of labour control ......................................... 80 State and labour control ................................................................... 87 Conclusion .......................................................................................... 89
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5
Female workers and trade unionism Introduction ........................................................................................ 91 Trade unionism on the CDC estates .............................................. 91 Shop stewards on the Tole Tea Estate ......................................... 103 Participation of female workers in trade unionism ................... 116 Conclusion ........................................................................................ 120
 6Informal and collective actions of female workers Introduction ...................................................................................... 125 Actions of female workers against managerial efforts to increase labour productivity ..................................................... 127 Actions of female workers against managerial efforts to establish control over the labour process .............................. 134 Actions of female workers against managerial efforts to minimise wages and other conditions of service ................. 138 Conclusion ........................................................................................ 140
Part II: The Ndu Tea Estate  7 Male workers Introduction ...................................................................................... 145 Ndu society ....................................................................................... 146 Agreement between EAC and the chief of Ndu ...................... 148 The male labour force on the Ndu Tea Estate .......................... 155 Remuneration of male pluckers on the Ndu Tea Estate .......... 161 Conclusion ........................................................................................ 167
 8Management of male workers and their informal modes of resistance Introduction ...................................................................................... 169 Labour control regime on the Ndu Tea Estate ......................... 169 Informal actions of male pluckers ............................................... 180 Conclusion ........................................................................................ 184
 9 Male workers and trade unionism Introduction ...................................................................................... 187 The emergence and development of trade unionism on the Ndu Tea Estate .................................................................... 188 Trade union and collective action of male pluckers, 1958-1991 ................................................................................... 198 Conclusion ........................................................................................ 227
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Part III: The Cameroon tea estates 10 Privatisation Cameroon’sand labour militancy: The case of tea estates Introduction ...................................................................................... 237 The privatisation of the CDC tea estates .................................... 239 Growing labour militancy on the Tole Tea Estate ..................... 243 Growing labour militancy on the Ndu Tea Estate .................... 252 Conclusion ........................................................................................ 257
References .............................................................................................263 Index ...................................................................................................279
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Acknowledgements
During several fieldwork periods I became indebted to a great number of people, and unfortunately there is room to mention only a few of them. Without the help of the management and the workers on the Anglophone Cameroon’s tea estates, this book would never have seen the light of day. I also highly appreciate the research assistance of Priscillia Ade and Cyprian Fisiy, who were not only extremely helpful in approaching relevant informants but also greatly contributed to my understanding of living and working conditions on the tea estates. I benefited from the advice and assistance of various institutes and organisations in Anglophone Cameroon. Of particular importance were the Buea National Archives and the Provincial and Divisional Delegations of Labour in Buea, Limbe and Nkambe which gave me access to relevant archives and documents, and the Divisional Unions of Agricultural Workers of Fako and Donga-Mantung, which provided me with vital information. I would further like to express my deep gratitude to the African Studies Centre in Leiden, which funded the entire project. I also like to thank Rob Buijtenhuijs, Shirley Ardener and Elisabeth Chilver for reading the manuscript and offering many helpful suggestions. Finally, a word of gratitude to Francis Nyamnjoh. Since we first met in Cameroon in the mid-1990s, he has become a close friend and collaborator in several research projects. He was actually the one who inspired me to undertake this book project and complete it.
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