How farmer-herder conflicts reconfigure the authority of politico-legal institutions in Ghana

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This article examines the consequences of farmer-herder conflict and the processes underlying how authority is sourced, maintained, and lost. It illustrates that farmer-herder conflicts are an important source of authority in rural Ghana. Yet, authority does not result from farmers hopping from one institution to another to authorize claims but rather through intense resistance from emerging social movements (farmers) against institutions. We show how the authority of institutions with rational-legal and traditional authority to grant property rights and mediate conflicts is being reconfigured by social movements. This is threatening state-building, raising serious concerns over governance and the direction of states.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Peasant Studies
Number of pages20
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 4 Jun 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

    Research areas

  • Authority, farmer-herder conflict, legitimacy, politico-legal institutions, state-building

ID: 394528939