A monograph is an anthropological study inspired by the vast literature on development in family farming and rural aging, and was designed as a follow-up to the previous survey on generations and gender relations on farms in Slovenia. The main focus of the research revolves around the experience of ambivalences and solidarity among adult members of selected six farm families (the beneficiaries and the non-beneficiaries of aid to young farmers and early retired farmers) from Prekmurje (NE Slovenia) in the course of their life careers. These relationships refer to various working domains on the farm and in the house, negotiation in decision-making about the introduction of novelties in the farm households, hereditary customs and practices of transfer and mutual assistance among relatives and neighbours – to the fields identified as sources for sympathetic, ambivalent or conflict relationships in particular time-period during the life course of every family member. Since family farming embrace dimensions of both a family and a firm (a family firm), the understanding of such relationships is necessary for a comprehensive consideration of ‘development strategies’ of their activities.
The ageing in farm population in Slovenia is accompanied by a diminishing interest of the younger generation in farming. Hence, measures for early retirement of farmers and assistance to young farmers were introduced in 2004 and 2005. Some results of two ensuing studies are presented here: the survey Generations and Gender Relations on Slovenian Farms and ethnographic study on intergenerational solidarity. The survey findings reveal that through intergenerational assistance farm population, especially the beneficiaries of both measures, shows specific characteristics compared to other observed groups (non-farmers): stronger reliance on their own family resources and weaker dependence on state resources. The survey findings are further upgraded by the ethnographic results, explaining more in-depth from a life-course perspective the complex dynamics and background of intergenerational assistance on family farms.
The aim of the research was to explain why rural women stand cautious towards agricultural extension/education. Fifty-two women livestock farmers from Thessaly-Greece were randomly collected to participate in the study. The results indicate that at one end of the spectrum women express a high willingness to participate in agricultural extension/education programmes, while at the other end this willingness is not translated into participation mainly because of women’s perception that agricultural extension/education constitutes a male dominated area. Another key determinant restricting women’s participation arises from their low familiarity with education and the unpleasant experiences they recall from the school.