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Peasants Against the State

The Politics of Market Control in Bugisu, Uganda, 1900-1983

Stephen Bunker challenges the image of peasants as passive victims and argues that coffee growers in the Bugisu District of Uganda, because they own land and may choose which crops to produce, maintain an unusual degree of economic and political independence.

Focusing on peasant struggles for market control over coffee exports in Bugisu from colonial times through the reign and overthrow of Idi Amin, Bunker shows that these freeholding peasants acted collectively and used the state’s dependence on coffee export revenues to effectively influence and veto government programs inimical to their interests.

Bunker’s work vividly portrays the small victories and great trials of ordinary people struggling to control their own economic destiny while resisting the power of the world economy.

302 pages | 6 x 9 | © 1987, 1991

African Studies

Sociology: General Sociology

Table of Contents

List of Abbreviations Used in the Text
Glossary of Lugisu Words Used in the Text
1. The Changing Ecology of Power, 1900-1940
2. The Campaign for Control of the Local Market, 1940-55
3. The Primacy of Politics
4. The Struggles for BCU Autonomy, 1955-58
5. National Independence, Politics, and Conflict within the BCU, 1958-63
6. Struggles for Administrative Control after Independence, 1963-66
7. Cooptation and Control under a Single-Party Regime, 1966-71
8. Centralization under Violence and Dependency, 1971-83
9. Conclusion: Suppression of Local Organization and Decline in Peasant Marketing
Appendix 1
Appendix 2

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