Shifting cultivation in Africa: the Zande system of agriculture

Routledge &PaulLondon • Published In 1956 • Pages:

By: Schlippe, Pierre de.

This is a thorough study of the Azande traditional system of agriculture in terms of its environmental and cultural limitations. The author, an agronomist, with years of field experience in Azandeland, offers detailed descriptions of the ecological setting, soil types, yearly weather cycle and the economic rhythm of Azande life, including the distribution of work and diet among age and sex classes. The first part of the book is confined to reporting the factual field study while the second part is devoted mainly to interpretation and practical suggestions for handling problems of culture change and administration in Azandeland. The author's major thesis is that traditional agriculture is not merely one aspect of Azande culture, but is, in fact, the main part if not synonymous with the total culture in its function of insuring the survival of the group (with its unique way of life) in its habitat. A lengthy 'notes' part at the end of the book includes detailed information on native agricultural practices and methods of storage and processing crops, as additional explanation to the numerous footnotes appearing throughout the text (see pp. 245-291).
Cereal agriculture
Vegetable production
Textile agriculture
Land use
Research and development
Annual cycle
General tools
HRAF PubDate
Sub Region
Central Africa
Document Type
Technical Personnel-5
Amal Vinogradov ; John Beierle
Coverage Date
not specified
Coverage Place
Zande District of Equatoria Province, Sudan
Pierre de Schlippe
The 'Zande Scheme' of economic development has been indexed for category 645
As an aid to the researcher the end diagrams (figs. 16-24) and plates which appear at the end of the book, originally unpaginated, have been paginated by the HRAF as pp. 305-365. Frequent references in the text to these diagrams and plates make this additional pagination practical and necessary.
Zande (African people)