|Year of Publication
|xvii, 151p. Include Bibliography & Index.
Zimbabwe’s agrarian history has attracted robust scholarly attention over time. Much of it has, however, focused on encounters between white settler farmers and Africans over control of resources. Scholars have also focused on how the postcolonial state has undermined the country’s agricultural sector through unsound policy interventions, notably the chaotic land reform programme of 2000. In both cases, emphasis is placed on the role of the state, either colonial or postcolonial, in propping up or undermining the country’s agro-based economy. While this is an indispensable approach, Politics, profits, and protection: Zimbabwe’s tobacco industry since 1947 provides an alternative yet complementary way of looking at the development of agriculture in Zimbabwe. The book uses the case of Zimbabwe’s tobacco industry to situate white settler agriculture in the broader context of post-Second World War British imperial policy and, to an extent, American foreign economic policy, decolonisation, and global tobacco trade politics. It concludes by highlighting policy continuities and discontinuities across the colonial-postcolonial divide. By pursuing these matters, the book makes a significant contribution to Zimbabwe’s economic history and to the growing literature on settler-colonial and postcolonial studies, with broader implications for regional and international trade debates. To achieve this, it draws on an extensive coverage of archives in Zimbabwe and South Africa, coupled with relevant newspaper reports, interviews, and industry publications.