Development and Urbanization
John McCarthy & Gerben Nooteboom
The literature frames rural transformations in terms of at least three patterned trajectories: pathways out of poverty and deagrariansation, diversification and migration, and accumulation and dispossesion. Examining the patterns of risk and opportunity faced by rural people in the rice producing lowlands of Java and Aceh, this paper contrasts the sources of nutritional insecurity and precarity as well as the opportunities for accumulation both in and outside agriculture that are inherent to the experiences of rural people in these different contexts. In each case we find dynamics of de-agrarianisation, adaptive diversity and rural stagnation that problematize settled ideas of truncated transitions and agrarian transition, suggesting that while change occurs, it rarely occurs as expected.