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Trees, tenure and conflict: Rubber in colonial Benin

Listed author(s):
  • Fenske, James

Tree crops have changed land tenure in Africa. Farmers have acquired permanent, alienable rights, but have also faced disputes with competing claimants and the state. Para rubber had many similar effects in the Benin region of colonial Nigeria. Farmers initially obtained land by traditional methods. Mature farms could be sold, let out, and used to raise credit. Disputes over rubber involved smallholders, communities of rival users, and migrants. The impact of tree crop commercialization in Benin differed from other cases due to local context, including pre-colonial institutions, the late spread of rubber, and the relative unimportance of migrant planters.

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File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0304387813000709
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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Development Economics.

Volume (Year): 110 (2014)
Issue (Month): C ()
Pages: 226-238

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Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:110:y:2014:i:c:p:226-238
DOI: 10.1016/j.jdeveco.2013.05.001
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/devec

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  1. Abhijit Banerjee & Lakshmi Iyer, 2005. "History, Institutions, and Economic Performance: The Legacy of Colonial Land Tenure Systems in India," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1190-1213, September.
  2. Quisumbing, Agnes R, et al, 2001. "Women's Land Rights in the Transition to Individualized Ownership: Implications for Tree-Resource Management in Western Ghana," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 50(1), pages 157-181, October.
  3. Hans-Ulrich Derlien & B. Guy Peters, 2008. "Introduction," Chapters,in: The State at Work, Volume 2, chapter 1 Edward Elgar Publishing.
  4. Fenske, James, 2013. "“Rubber will not keep in this country”: Failed development in Benin, 1897–1921," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 316-333.
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  7. Libecap, Gary D., 2007. "The Assignment of Property Rights on the Western Frontier: Lessons for Contemporary Environmental and Resource Policy," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 67(02), pages 257-291, June.
  8. James Fenske, 2014. "The battle for rubber in Benin," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 67(4), pages 1012-1034, November.
  9. Sue Bowden & Blessing Chiripanhura & Paul Mosley, 2008. "Measuring and explaining poverty in six African countries: A long-period approach," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(8), pages 1049-1079.
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  13. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2001. "The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1369-1401, December.
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