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Accumulation and Livelihoods Strategies of the Hlengwe Peasantry in Mahenye, Along the Zimbabwe-Mozambique Border

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Abstract

The majority of Hlengwe households in Mahenye in south-eastern Zimbabwe along the Mozambican border own large herds and flocks of livestock, and they also enjoy diverse livelihood strategies. Available studies link this wealth and livelihood strategies to the people’s proximity to the Gonarezhou National Park and the Save River which boost tourism activities in the area and from which they also harvest plentiful natural resources illegally. Studies which explore how the Hlengwe utilise their strategic location along the Zimbabwe-Mozambique border as an accumulation and livelihoods strategy are lacking. This chapter shows that, in responding to the unfolding broad-based socio-economic and political crisis which Zimbabwe is currently experiencing, the borderlanders of Mahenye have adopted diverse accumulation and livelihoods strategies, most of which entail cross-border networks and are influenced by their close proximity to the border. Utilising an ethnography methodology augmented by a review of secondary sources, it shows that cross-border movements boost livestock and crop production, seasonal employment, and trade opportunities for the Hlengwe in Mahenye. It would seem, therefore, that the Hlengwe in Mahenye have harnessed and mastered their geographical location and relations to boost their accumulation regimes and also sustain their livelihood strategies.

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Notes

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    Day-to-day discussions with community members.

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    Day-to-day discussions with community members.

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    Day-to-day discussions with community members.

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    Day-to-day discussions with community members.

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    Day-to-day discussions with community members.

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    Day-to-day discussions with community members.

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    Day-to-day discussions with community members.

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    Day-to-day discussions with community members.

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    Day-to-day discussions with community members.

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    Day-to-day discussions with community members.

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    Day-to-day discussions with community members.

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Ndhlovu, E. (2023). Accumulation and Livelihoods Strategies of the Hlengwe Peasantry in Mahenye, Along the Zimbabwe-Mozambique Border. In: Pophiwa, N., Matanzima, J., Helliker, K. (eds) Lived Experiences of Borderland Communities in Zimbabwe. Springer Geography. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-32195-5_2

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