Season 4 Episode 9: Betsimitatra and the Wonders of Merina Agricultural Engineering

History of Africa

Mar 27 2023 • 30 mins

As Andrianjaka passes his stable but poor kingdom to his grandchildren, they undertake an enormous project to improve the agricultural output of Imerina. Their largest project, consisting of the miles of canals and terraces of Betsimitatra, would go on to transform the destiny of Imerina's history. This project, completed using the fanampoana system of conscript labor,  would forever transform the demographics of Imerina by kicking off a decades-long trend of rapid Merina population growth. Notre Dame StoriesStories highlighting Notre Dame’s work to be a force for good in the world.Listen on: Apple Podcasts   Spotify Support the show Learn more about your ad choices. Visit