The family and national development in Botswana: a plea for research
PublisherBotswana Society, http://www.jstor.org/stable/40979677
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There has been sufficient concern in Botswana about the family that it has become a subject of several radio debates and panel discussions. Recently, a National Law Reform Committee was set up to look into, among other things, the existence of both customary and statutory laws relating to marriage. Whatever the success of the Law Reform Committee will prove to be in the future, for now, it does represent a significant formal recognition by government that there are serious problems in this area of concern. By reflecting on field experiences, teaching as well as public discussions of the subject, this paper calls attention to an area of social research which is contemporary and relevant, but which has not enjoyed systematic attention hitherto. The aim of this paper will be to illustrate how the modern Tswana family as it is found today throughout the country, to a lesser or greater extent, does not correspond with its modern ideal as well as its legal conception. This departure from the defining characteristics creates problems for family life and in the long run have retarding effects on community, and by extrapolation, National development potentials.