Human Ecology

, Volume 24, Issue 2, pp 149–160 | Cite as

Gender and livestock in African production systems: An introduction

  • John Curry


Since the 1970s, the study of gender relations and labor and resource use in different production systems has become an important subject of inquiry. While there has been recent interest in gender and livestock issues in pastoral societies, most of the work on gender and agriculture to date has focused primarily upon the role of women in crop production, to the virtual exclusion of the contributions women, children, and the elderly make to the livestock component of the farming system. The topic of gender (broadly defined to include age and sex criteria) and livestock management was addressed at a session at the 1992 Annual Meetings of the American Anthropological Association entitled, “Gender and Livestock in African Production Systems,” the contributions to which form the basis of the present volume. Topics presented in the papers include: a conceptual framework for investigation of gender and livestock production and disease control, responsibility for productive tasks, livestock ownership and rights to livestock products, and impacts of and responses to change. Nearly all papers in the volume argue explicitly or implicitly for the need to include gender considerations in the planning of livestock development programs, thereby rendering the collection of interest to both scientits and policymakers.

Key words

gender issues livestock production systems sub-Saharan Africa 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Curry
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Pan Livestock ServicesReadingUK
  2. 2.Kenya Agricultural Research InstituteNairobiKenya

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