Structural Adjustment and Women Informal Sector Traders in Harare, Zimbabwe

Structural Adjustment and Women Informal Sector Traders in Harare, Zimbabwe

Structural Adjustment and Women Informal Sector Traders in Harare, Zimbabwe

Structural Adjustment and Women Informal Sector Traders in Harare, Zimbabwe

Synopsis

Most attempts to study the informal sector have tended to emphasize uniformity of experiences. Where an effort has been made to develop a more nuanced understanding, the assumption has always been that people move from lower to higher level activities that coincide with increased opportunities for accumulation. This report challenges both notions. Drawing on the experiences of women informal sector traders in Harare, Zimbabwe, & using a longitudinal study approach, the authors document differentiation within the sector amidst generalized decline in working & living conditions. Far from being a site of accumulation, the authors show that the informal sector during the era of adjustment is a site of bare survival in which people work ever longer hours for ever-diminishing incomes on which many competing claims are made within & outside the household.
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