Pub. date: 2004 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412952415 | Print ISBN: 9780761926498 | Online ISBN: 9781412952415| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Edward J. Shaughnessy & Cheri Peck
Zimbabwe is a landlocked country located in Southern Africa, bordered by South Africa, Mozambique, Botswana, and Zambia. It has an area of 390,580 square kilometers and an estimated population of 12.7 million people (July 2003 estimate). The United Kingdom acquired the territory in 1923. It became independent in 1965, although because of a constitution that concentrated power in the hands of a white majority, it was not internationally recognized. In 1979, after a guerilla uprising, free elections were held and the country was renamed Zimbabwe (the colonial name was Rhodesia). President Robert Mugabe, who has ruled the country since 1987, introduced controversial land redistribution reforms in 2000, ostensibly to reverse the results of colonization that had led to whites dominating land ownership. In addition to causing a ...