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New Millennium Woes and Livelihood Struggles in Africa

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Thomas, Peter

Marongwe, Ngonidzashe

Langaa RPCIG, 2021
Livrel 284p.
(Developing & Emerging Countries) - ISBN: 9789956552009
One of the oldest survival pursuits undertaken by the weak and the downtrodden people across the world has been begging. Going back to the ancient Christian biblical times up to the present epoch as well as across varying spatial settings, in situations of trouble and tribulations, parts of various communities have resorted to beggary to either overcome immediate adversities or longer term calamities. Drawing on insights from two polar theoretical lenses of Social Constructionism and Social Deconstructionism, and guided by a pithy study of the begging across the African continent especially by Zimbabweans, this book troubles the various contours related to the subject of begging. Inter alia, the book considers the concept of begging, the causes of the prevalence of begging across the world and particularly among Zimbabweans, the challenges and benefits associated with the pursuit of alms, the impact of begging in foreign lands as well as some of the strategies that beggars employ to maximize their collections and/ or profits. What can be discerned from the book is that for many, begging is one of the last resort undertakings with low pickings. However, from a utilitarian perspective, begging has helped to sustain the impoverished livelihoods of Zimbabweans, both inside and outside the borders of the country since the advent of a debilitating crisis experienced from the turn of the new millennium. On the whole, this book seeks to provoke further researches on an important socio-economic area that affects many African communities but has so far been scantily researched. The book is handy for students and practitioners in economic history, African studies, economics, risk and disaster management, social anthropology, political science, and development studies.
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