In many ACP rural areas, a number of adverse factors come together at a particular time of year, interlocking to produce what has become known as seasonality. The lowest point is generally seen during tropical rainy seasons, when the need for hard work coincides with vulnerability to sickness, lack of food, poverty of time and energy, shortage of money, isolation and lack of access to markets and services. The advent of climate change is compounding the problem, bringing more intense rainfall at wider intervals.

Conditions and experiences of seasonality vary according to location, gender and resources. But as this book shows, the phenomenon is a severe constraint to sustainable rural livelihoods, and a driver of poverty and hunger. Many poor people in developing countries are ill equipped to cope with seasonal variations which can lead to drought or flood and consequences for agriculture, employment, food supply and the spread of disease. Embarking on a systematic study over 20 years, the book offers case study chapters exploring seasonal dimensions of livelihoods in Ethiopia, Kenya and Malawi, amongst other tropical countries.

Seasonality, Rural Livelihoods and Development
Edited By S Devereux,
R Longhurst & R Sabates-Wheeler
Earthscan, 2011; 326 pp.
ISBN 978-1-84971-325-2
GBP29.99 • €36
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14a St Cross Street, London
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