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Agnes Andersson Djurfeldt

Professor, pro dean


The Bright Lights Grow Fainter - livelihoods, migration and a small town in Zimbabwe


  • Agnes Andersson Djurfeldt

Summary, in English

The Aids pandemic and structural adjustment policies (SAP) have had effects on lower income households in Zimbabwe which have been devastating and people have been required to adapt their livelihood strategies. Small towns meahnwhile are growing rapidly in Zimbabwe and mobility towards these towns may be connected with the changes being forged by SAP on the economic landscape. This study seeks to establish how the individual migrant uses mobility tot negotiate this landscape. This involves mobility directed towards small towns to access advantageous provisioning possibilities, and also the engagment in a multitude of family linkages from the small town to other places within the settlement system. Substantiated through a case study of Rusape, this study suggests that lower living costs, higher food security and a more accessible labour market may be attracting migrants from higher level urban centres. The role of the network of kin relations in mobility is important and migrants' networks over space cover both rural homes and urban areas. The access to networks, however, is being stratified under SAP and the ability to maintain linkages with relatives is declining, suggesting a rising vulnerability connected with the inability of leaving places and entering others.

Publishing year




Document type



Almqvist & Wiksell International


  • Human Geography


  • small towns
  • Rusape
  • structural adjustment
  • provisioning
  • mobility
  • migration
  • Zimbabwe
  • livelihood
  • kin networks




  • Gunilla Andrae


  • ISBN: 91-22-01967-7

Defence date

7 June 2002

Defence time


Defence place

Frescati, Stockholm University


  • David Simon (Prof.)