According to the World Food Programme, with the exception of Haiti, all of the world’s countries that experienced a malnourishment rate of 35% of the population or higher last year are located in sub-Saharan Africa. Of the nearly one billion hungry people in the world, one quarter of them are of them are Africans. Why is it that they are not better-able to feed themselves (or others, for that matter) with their vast amounts of undeveloped land? The goal of this paper is to demonstrate the historical and developing influences of globalization and gender on agriculture in sub-Saharan Africa, and what is being done to help natives obtain and sustain self-sufficiency.

To do so, this paper will examine many of the cultural, governmental, and environmental obstacles to improving African agriculture. It will start with brief background information covering what traditional agriculture was like in sub-Saharan Africa before, during, and after the dominant influence of colonialism. The next section will delve into the side effects of globalization on the region, piecing together both intended and unintended consequences. The issue of gender will be analyzed, particularly the traditional and modern roles that women play, in order to better understand how culture has impacted agricultural development. Finally, the roles that finance, insurance, research, and climate play will all be considered in respect to their effects on the future agricultural prospects of African farmers.