My thesis deals with the social and economic history of central Mozambique, in particularManica province. The main purpose of the study is to explain and analyse the causes and processes through which central Mozambique was gradually integrated into the regional economy and transformedonto a labour reserve for Southern Rhodesia’s mine and commercial farms. In particular, the thesis explores the socio-economic implications of labour migration for rural life in Manica and examines thedifferent forms of collective organisation and political consciousness amongst Mozambican migrants in Southern Rhodesia between 1930 and 1960s.
The thesis is structured into four sections. Theintroductory section provides the overview of the independent local kingdoms of Manica and Quiteve. The first part of the section examines the impact of mercantile capital before the nineteenth century andthe influence of the Gaza-Nguni between 1830s and 1890s.The second part, analyses colonial conquest and the political economy of Mozambique Company and labour migration before 1930s.
The secondsection, concentrates on the colonial years of 1930 and 1965, and discusses the unsuccessful attempts of the undercapitalised Portuguese economy to attract and stabilise local African labour. Africanhouseholds responded to the market economy through producing maize, wheat and cotton cash crops.
The third section investigates the different ways youth and adult males incorporated migrancy into ruralsociety in Manica district, particularly its role in the process of the emergence and consolidation of African peasantry, as well as the improvement of their standard of living and the education oftheir children. The last section analyses the process through which Mozambican migrants established proto-nationalist organisations and developed various forms of political consciousness in Southern...