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Would Cecil Rhodes have signed a code of conduct?

Cecil Rhodes

Oxfam | September 2010

Would Cecil Rhodes have signed a Code of Conduct?

Reflections on global land grabbing and land rights in Africa, past and present

Source: Robin Palmer (Mokoro)

Summary: Includes land grabbing in early colonial Zimbabwe and Mozambique, contemporary land  grabbing, biofuels (citing IIED and Houtart), a ‘race to the bottom’ to attract investors? (citing the new World Bank report), the literature (citing Zoomers, Borras and Franco), conclusion.

Date: September 2010 (African Studies Association of the UK biennial conference, Oxford)

Over the past year, I have been collecting material on biofuels, land rights in Africa, and global land grabbing. Reading through this material worries me greatly, for it carries very strong echoes of Cecil Rhodes and his merry men. It worries me because of the nature, scale and secrecy of land grabbing, the power imbalances involved, the curious responses to it, and the seemingly limited capacity of anyone to do much to either halt or modify it. The long term impact on many African rural communities will almost certainly be extremely serious.

Download the full paper (PDF 333KB)

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