8. Returning to Chitemene Farming and Pig Rearing
Since the end of the Cold War, African states, like other places around the world, have been going through a major shift, entailing economic liberalization and political democratization through the introduction of a plural political party system. In Zambia too, a new regime was installed in 1991, and has promoted a policy of economic liberalization. The subsidies for chemical fertilizers and transportation costs were abolished and the unified producer’s price of maize was liberalized. In remote places such as village M, faamu cultivation had to be abandoned as chemical fertilizers and other items became unavailable. When I visited village M in 1998, the villagers had already gone back to chitemene cultivation and also begun to put a great deal of effort into pig rearing, which they were not used to. In other villages, people had abandoned hamlets located along the roads and moved to places near big rivers in search of trees and water.