Displaced Tastes is a research project run by the Rift Valley Institute in partnership with the Catholic University of South Sudan under the X-Border Local Research Network. The project examines the changing tastes for food in South Sudan in the context of the country’s economic transition and place in the regional, cross-border economy of grain. In this piece, researcher Elizabeth Nyibol describes the life story of her aunt, Mary Ajok Wetkwuot, who throughout her life has demonstrated a commitment to growing the indigenous grains of her Dinka community — varieties of sorghum and millet — which she carried with her while living much of her life in displacement. The account shows how Mary, like many other Dinka women, deployed the social and material capital of seeds under her control to manage the wider transitions experienced during South Sudan’s decades of war.
Migrating with Seeds: Women, Agricultural Knowledge and Displacement in South Sudan
This account shows how Dinka women deployed the social and material capital of seeds under their control to manage the wider transitions experienced during South Sudan’s decades of war. It also reveals details of the gendered and generational relationships between farming and cattle-keeping, which are often overlooked in external representations of livelihoods in the Dinka community.