Drawing on a range of archival sources, this article examines the experiences of Africans who purchased land under freehold tenure and the debates that this generated among white settlers in early colonial Zimbabwe. In doing so, the article addresses the question of peasant differentiation, rural authority and colonial anxieties over power and African economic competition and the policing of white settlers' sexual behaviours. By focusing on African attempts at purchasing land before the passage of the Land Apportionment Act (1930) which institutionalized racialized land allocation and set aside exclusive areas where better off Africans could purchase land, this article does not only address a neglected subject, but pulls together in one narrative the different strands of themes surrounding land, missionary paternalism, colonial projects of rural rule and the policing of settler social behaviour in early colonial Zimbabwe.


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 32-53
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.