The Last Generation of "Peasants" is Approaching

by Frithjof Kuhnen

For a long time, the "peasant" ("Kleinbauer") has been the centre of interest in discussions on Third World agriculture. While he has hardly been defined satisfactorily, and, indeed, exists in various species on the different continents, the majority of all agricultural activities lies in his hands, and he is the target of most agricultural development policies. Still - considering ail the variations between countries and regions - it appears that, today, we are experiencing the last generation of peasants. There will be a long period of transition, but it is necessary to consider, at an early stage already, the possible consequences and the alternatives for the future.