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Caring for livestock. Borana women's perceptions of their changing role in livestock management in southern Ethiopia

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Livestock management in the Borana pastoral production system is performed by all family members and the functioning of the system depends on their capability to conduct these activities. However, in recent times, multi-level changes seem to have affected these activities and the related division of labour and demand for labour. In this study we used an actororiented approach to understand how Borana pastoral women in southern Ethiopia perceive and evaluate their current role and work in livestock management under the increasing influence of these changes. Based on information gained through 58 semi-structured and nine narrative interviews, women's perceptions of the activity 'fodder collection for young stock' are presented as an example, as this activity is affected by both environmental issues and government policies that have led to changes in labour needs and division of labour between Borana women and men.
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Keywords: Borana livestock management; gender; pastoralism; southern Ethiopia; women's perceptions

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 January 2015

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  • Nomadic Peoples is an international journal published by the White Horse Press for the Commission on Nomadic Peoples, International Union of Anthropological and Ethnological Sciences. Its primary concerns are the current circumstances of all nomadic peoples around the world and their prospects. Its readership includes all those interested in nomadic peoples, scholars, researchers, planners and project administrators.
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