SOAS University of London

Department of Development Studies

Rural class formation and accumulation from below: artisanal gold mining in South Kivu, DR Congo

Ben Radley (LSE)

Date: 23 October 2019Time: 5:15 PM

Finishes: 23 October 2019Time: 7:00 PM

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings Room: G51a

Type of Event: Seminar

In recent decades, mining (re)industrialisation across Africa has been led by transnational corporations. Within this process, a more locally-led and embedded form of artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) has been marginalised, based on perceptions about its low productivity, inefficiency and criminality. Yet extensive study of artisanal gold mining in South Kivu Province in the Democratic Republic of the Congo reveals a very different picture, one where ASM productivity might be low but appears to be increasing, through a locally-managed and controlled process of mechanisation via technological assimilation and capital formation. In addition, most of the end value generated by ASM gold production is captured by and distributed between different groups of Congolese traders, managers and workers. Based on these findings, the theoretical foundations driving mining (re)industrialisation across Africa today are challenged.

Part of the Agrarian Change Seminars.

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Independent and complementary to Journal of Agrarian Change