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Land of the UnconquerableThe Lives of Contemporary Afghan Women$
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Jennifer Heath and Ashraf Zahedi

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780520261853

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520261853.001.0001

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Rural Women's Livelihood

Rural Women's Livelihood

Their Position in the Agrarian Economy

(p.262) Chapter 17 Rural Women's Livelihood
Land of the Unconquerable

Jo Grace

Adam Pain

University of California Press

This chapter presents a clear depiction of how Afghan women outside urban areas negotiate to benefit themselves and their families, and how they gain power and fulfillment despite inequities. In particular, it summarizes the evidence on selected aspects of women's role in the rural economy as economic agents (in relation to agriculture, carpets and textiles, and credit systems) and their access and control over land and livestock. Some of the key and differing activities of rural women are reviewed to show aspects of the contribution they make in agriculture. Women and carpets are iconic images of Afghanistan to the external world, and, historically, women have played the major role in carpet and kilim weaving. The significant features and widespread characteristics about rural credit in Afghanistan are explained. Women find a variety of ways to navigate the structural constraints that affect their lives and act for their interests.

Keywords:   rural economy, Afghan women, agriculture, carpets, textiles, rural credit, land, livestock, Afghanistan

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