The Sociology of sub Saharan Africa

Sociology of Sub Saharan Africa

The Sociology of Sub Saharan Africa. When a discussion or talk is about the rural settings what comes to mind for most of social scientists is about rural poverty. However, studying about rural sociology, I am puzzled by its subject matter which deals with issues I did not think about it at all. I guess you too will be amazed by this relatively young discipline.

Rural Sociology

Rural sociology is the study of social organization and social processes that are characteristic of geographical localities where population size is relatively small and density is low (Warner 1974). Thus, rural sociology can be defined as the sociology of rural society. Since rural societies do not exist in isolation, rural sociology also addresses the relation of rural society to the larger society. Therefore, it deals also with spatial organization and the processes that produce spatial allocations of population and human activities (Newby 1980; Newby and Buttel 1980).


There is a temptation to equate rural sociology with American rural sociology because the latter is most thoroughly institutionalized and there are more practitioners in the United States than anywhere else in the world. While rural sociology, in its institutionalized form, originated in America, it has flourished in other regions of the world, especially since the end of World War II. No doubt this is due in large part to the “modernization” efforts in the many nations that gained independence since 1950.


Outside North America, sociological investigations of rural society often are referred to as peasant studies, development studies, or village studies rather than rural sociology (Newby 1980). Moreover, some aspects of rural sociological analysis are closely related to other social science disciplines, such as settlement patterns with human geography, family and kinship systems with social anthropology, and land tenure and farming systems with agricultural and land economics.

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When Rural Sociology is applied to most of our African countries what you are most likely to experience is the conflict between farmers and pastoralists. These two groups of individuals in most cases you find that they are the same people. And this problem before them is caused by town or rural planners. These planners fail to plan properly for the people to be able to live in peace. Thus rural sociology in Africa could deal with different tribes in conflict due to differences in their economic activities.


In Africa we can solve this problem by planning our rural areas; let there be rules and regulations directing people how to deal with their differences towards success in life and making rural life more peacefully.


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