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Carting in the Northern Province: Structural and geographical change

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Throughout the world rural transportation is grossly underresearched. In southern Africa the nature of transport in country areas is only beginning to be studied. Indications are that pre-industrial forms have persisted despite changed economic and social conditions, and that these should be seen as a cost-effective alternative under certain socio-economic conditions of transition to a modern economy. As also in other places, in the Northern Province donkey carting has adapted its socio-economic and technological structure to new conditions; these changes have occurred at a different pace in different localities. The prime aim of the research is to ascertain the degree to which deliberate alterations in the geography of carting have been a successful strategy for the survival of carters. The finding that emerges from this study is that low-technology transport has persisted despite the introduction of modern means of transport and tarred roads, but that it is ignored and dismissed because it falls outside the formal purview of the state.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Geography, University of the North, Pietersburg.

Publication date: 01 June 2000

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