CIFSRF project focused on pulses (chickpeas and lentils). Pulses are subsistence crops and commodities – as such, linked to gender and other social relations of production. Picture = men’s chickpeas on one side, woman’s on other. Looks like straightforward instance of gender inequality. However, in this paper we want to suggest that story is much more complex.
C2 wealthy not much different from middle – largest landholding in C2 = 4 ha; largest in C1=11 haDistinction between “owning” and “having control over”C1 probably even more differentiated because more “contract” and “collaboration” concentrating crops in hands of wealthy
Highly ritualized, involving specific implements, ideally involves incense, fire must be lit, coffee beans washed and roasted, spices added, ground and mixed with boiling water, served in special vessel and cups. Snacks (chickpeas, corn) also served.Time-consuming, labor-intensiveCulturally meaningful – described as “habesha” (Kerry at CC)Powerfully gendered – women not only provide labour but also display skill. Not a single google image picture showing man preparing coffee
Note variability across and within communities
CC as strategy to maintain position in village hierarchy – bargaining with neighbours and family using CCs
Why does hhreptuation matter? Because it is one of the engines of economy of affection – creates ties of reciprocity and obligation which enable people to mobilize labour and get assistance from others. … but also “horizontalizes” hierarchies, making asymmetric power relations easier to live with
Similar to women’s resistance to changes that lower the value of their labour in other contexts – resistance to co-optation into men’s activities in unequal terms
Social relations are emergent – economic changes affect C1 differently from C,2, possibly leading to changes in CCCash nexus is becoming stronger – but some forms of social currency are not convertible – money can’t substitute for prestige, status, habesha
Gender: Coffee ceremonies, gender and food security in two Ethopian villages
JoAnn Jaffe, University of Regina
Amy Kaler, University of Alberta
Improving Nutrition in Ethiopia through
Plant Breeding and Soil Management
IDRC Project 106927-001/2
1. From chickpeas to coffee
2. Theoretical framing: bargaining and moral economies
3. The sites
4. The methods
5. The coffee ceremony
6. Findings: Coffee ceremonies and
1. Household reputation
2. Labour mobilization
3. “Complex gender”
7. Conclusion: coffee ceremonies and social change
• Relations within and between households are
• Men, women, rich, poor, workers, landowners ….
• People offer labour, time,
social status in exchange
for present or future
“Economy of affection”
• Collective understanding
of who owes what to
• Mutual assistance
• Not only about money
• 2 x (n=20) households in southern Ethiopia
• Increasing need for cash
• Rising food prices
• Paying for labour and land access
• Survival depends on positive social relations
• Loans, food, animals, “hunger season”, credit, grazing
space, seeds, plants, firewood …
• C1: Highly differentiated
• C2: Less differentiation
% Households exercising effective control over arable
• 90% of households hold at least one CC per day
• Modal number of CCs is 2
• Mean number of guests: 10.4 (ranging from 5 to 20)
• C1: 8.9
It is a must to make [coffee] it is a duty, even if it means stopping other
jobs. Coffee must be given priority. Two coffee ceremonies are common
for our household. … For the third, if guests come, I’ll help her with the
fire and washing the cups, so she can prepare coffee with me.
We can’t decrease the coffee ceremony … Neighbours will increase the
amount of gossip, the neighbours will think badly of us, and they may
not do coffee with us [invite us to their coffee ceremonies]. (Rich and
medium men, C2).
W1: Based on our economy, if we have the coffee
ceremony three times a day the crops will run out. It [the
ceremony] takes much time without working in the field.
[But] if there is no more [ceremonies], the neighbours
talk, they say “she has no crops in the house, she is poor”.
W2: I have the coffee ceremony three times a day. If I stop
doing it, neighbours think I am poor.
W3: If I have no more coffee ceremony, neighbours think
“she has no crops for her coffee ceremony”. But if I prepare
nice coffee, people say “you are skilled, like baalamuya [a
gracious woman]. If I don’t prepare nice coffee, I’m not a
skilled woman. (Wives of male heads of households, C2)
• CCs appear to be connected to collective labour groups
• The larger and more frequent the ceremonies, the more
likely the household is to take part
Family-only ceremonies (n=11) Neighbours and kin coffee ceremonies
Percentage participating in collective
• Not just male appropriate of female time and labour
• Dado: Women’s ceremonies
• Baalmuya: Display of gendered competence and skill
• Women’s resistance to reducing ceremonies
W1: My husband tells me that dado is killing time
W2: There’s more time [for other work] now that we’ve
stopped doing dado, but still no advantage for us. (Wives of
household heads, C1)
• What’s this got to do with food security?
• Beyond nutrition: building social relations that create food
• Food is social currency as well as “body fuel”
• The future?
• Reductions of ceremonies in C1
• Economy of affection losing ground to mobilization through
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