An understanding of interrelationships between agronomic systems and the larger social organizational structures that sustain them is deemed crucial in devising appropriate strategies for increased crop production in Africa and other nonwestern settings. This paper focuses on Swaziland, in southern Africa, where effort is under way to promote surplus, commercial cropping among small-scale indigenous farmers. The persistence of subsistence type cropping by these farmers is shown to relate to traditional patterns of family economic organization, specifically division of labor and ties of economic interdependence among family members. Implications for agronomic policy are discussed.

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