n Commonwealth Youth and Development - An analysis of literary depictions of youth employment and socio-economic development against the backdrop of Land Redistribution in post-2000 Zimbabwe

Volume 12, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1727-7140



The article discusses literary depictions of youth employment opportunities and sustainable socioeconomic development in post-2000 Zimbabwe in Lawrence Hoba and Petina Gappah's short story collections, The Trek and Other Stories (2009) and An Elegy for Easterly (2009), respectively. The article views youth employment from an unorthodox/unscientific perspective, considering the informal self-employment strategies that Zimbabwean society has adopted, as depicted in the selected short story collections. It defies the singular approach in the manner that employment is generally viewed and quantified, especially in the context of the vilified Zimbabwean land redistribution processes that the short story collections dwell on. To this end, the article challenges readers and critics of the Zimbabwean youth employment situation and Zimbabwean sustainable socio-economic development from the perspective of the tight rope that the country walks on as Zimbabweans adopt strategies and mechanisms to self-regenerate and transform the livelihoods of the greater majority. The article concludes that real and sustainable youth employment and greater socio-economic development can only be attained through genuine ownership of land as the major economic resource, and through internal accountability for the more equitable distribution and benefitting the same. Self-serving modes that see development as an end in itself, without taking into account the quality of human lives, are self-defeating.

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