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    STUDIA SOCIOLOGIA - Issue no. 2 / 2014  

Authors:  .
  Abstract:  International donors and states in the global south are promoting the virtues of private, legally sanctioned property, with the promise that once achieved this will bring about more fairness in the distribution of resources and more economic opportunities. I look at the case of periurban Ghana to show how indeed this is the case for a narrow elite of owners and entrepreneurs, while the same mechanisms works to exclude and make vulnerable former holders of rights in the same lands. Moreover, I suggest that for most of the citizens of the country, the privatization of land rights through titling and registration is simply not an issue. I look at the divergence between the expectations of the state and international organizations in terms of property management and the practices of the citizens. I take the case of a local community in order to gain insights into how the present day situation came to be as a result of land relations and land policies in the precolonial times, during colonialism, after independence, during the structural adjustment programmes, and, finally, during the most recent Land Administration Programme.

Keywords: Ghana, West Africa, property relations, land privatisation
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