Social Economics

You may have heard much talk about creating your own economy. In Africa, even today, we have an economy based on the exchange of goods in rural and some town areas. Rather than the exchange of goods for money.

The most popular version of this is the exchange of a wife for a douri, i.e. where a man would give 10 or more cows or livestock in exchange for a mans daughter. This is designed to show respect and demonstrate your intentions for their daughter.

After being in South Africa, I learnt this was for the man to show the father of the bride to see how the man has nurtured and maintained the live stock as these qualities are required to take care of his daughter.

In regards to markets and trading traditionally, we (as Africans) have not always used coins in exchange for goods. It has been items in exchange for items and if we do not have a item which is the exact price of the item then we negotiate i.e barter to get a price which both parties will settle for.

There has been talk of black people, especially in America taking up this type of economy for items as some whites are beginning to do this. Looking from a UK example there has been attempts to do this but there is a downside.

This being mainly middle class and affluent people who have the security of money to do this can do it, whilst bills and utilities cannot be p0aid for with batering or through a social economy – reciprication.

There is also the possibility of developing a underground market where people can be exploited so someone will exchange labour or favours for goods and there will be no definate time or point where this will be repaid.

Despite these reservations a social economy could work but it would be more beneficial in Africa where we belong rather than in the west as, we do not have the infrastructure to fully take advantage of such a economy in the US or where ever black people are outside of Africa.

(Image Source:

https://jaunehibiscus.wordpress.com/2010/06/29/african-print-and-pagne-cheap-or-cheap/)

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