The sexual economy of a sugar plantation: Privatization and social welfare in northern Tanzania

by Alison Holt Norris and Eric Worby

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By Alison Holt Norris and Eric Worby Drawing on intensive ethnographic work, we explore how privatization has transformed the field of social and sexual relations on a large sugar plantation in northern Tanzania. Privatization has resulted in permanent layoffs, intensified labor discipline, and the displacement of former residents and of informal economic activities from the plantation itself into villages on the plantation perimeter. We show how spatial and temporal changes in the labor economy of the plantation following privatization have had complex consequences for residents and have fueled a new sexual economy.

Tanzanian Sugar Enterprises Plantation, near Moshi.  Photo by Alison Norris.
Tanzanian Sugar Enterprises Plantation, near Moshi. Photo by Alison Norris.

See: onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01369.x/abstract