"Socialization of the countryside" and its consequences for agricultural production in Manica district - Mozambique, 1975-1987

This study analyzes the “socialization of the countryside” and its consequences for agricultural production in Manica district during the postcolonial period from 1975 until 1987. The impact of this policy, developed by FRELIMO as guerrilla movement during the struggle of liberation of Mozambique (1964-1974) and as FRELIMO government from 1975 until 1987, has been analyzed here in historical perspective. During the struggle in liberated zones, FRELIMO along with the rural African population developed a collective form of production inspired by African socialism developed by President Julius Nyerere in Tanzania. FRELIMO’s new policy was implemented in whole country after independence in 1975, through the creation of the state companies, communal villages, and cooperatives of production between 1976 and 1987. This policy was implemented in the countryside without having the rural experience necessary to inform its functioning. Additionally, the weakness of human resources in its management of the policy further undermined its success. Furthermore, the war led by RRENAMO from 1976 until its end in 1992 weakened the state’s resolve. These three factors became the basic causes of the policy’s abandonment in 1983, and its replaced by the neo-liberal economic adjustment policy in 1987.
A thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Masters by Coursework and Research Report in the Department of History, the Faculty of Humanities, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg