Book Reviews

Book Review: Mythri Jegathesan’s Tea & Solidarity

March 23, 2022

JAYASEELAN RAJ   Tea and Solidarity is a fascinating monograph by Mythri Jegathesan that examines the lives of tea-plucking women and their families as they seek work outside the Sri Lankan plantations. It provides a powerful description of their struggle for a dignified life within and outside the plantations, what Jegathesan calls their ‘desires for…

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‘Finance going farming’: A review essay

October 23, 2021

In recent years, land has once again received a great deal of attention in critical agrarian studies. The most recent ‘land rush’, which began in 2008, has forced issues surrounding land to centre stage, not only in the Global South but also in the Global North.

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Book Review: Penelope Anthias’ Limits to Decolonization

May 25, 2021

ENRIQUE CASTAÑÓN BALLIVIÁN   Limits to Decolonization is a rich ethnographic account of an indigenous struggle for territorial recognition in a context of intensifying extractivism. It traces the historical demand of Guaraní communities to regain control of their ancestral territory in the Bolivian Chaco where most of the country’s gas extraction takes place. While the…

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Land questions in the 21st Century Postcolony

November 8, 2020

M VIJAYABASKAR   Labour may have become less relevant to capital accumulation in the 21st century as scholars like Sanyal, Li and Ferguson suggest. The recent spate of literature on ‘land grabs’ has, however, made the role of land in capital accumulation much more visible now than it was in the latter half of the last…

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Book review of Pablo Lapegna’s Soybeans and Power

October 4, 2020

CARLA GRAS   In Soybeans and Power, Pablo Lapegna offers a thorough and challenging analysis of the contested terrain of Genetically Modified (GM) crops in Argentina. Drawing upon long-term ethnographic fieldwork in the province of Formosa, in the North East of that country, he addresses key issues regarding the new landscapes produced by the expansion…

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Rule by Bosses? Criminal Political Economies in South Asia

July 19, 2020

MICHAEL LEVIEN   In the past few decades, the term “mafia” has gained widespread usage across South Asia, and particularly India and Pakistan where there are said to be a variety of sector-specific ones: “land mafia,” “sand mafia,” “coal mafia,” “timber mafia,” “water mafia,” “contractor mafia,” and so on. The sum total of these mafia…

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Book Review of Xavier Lafrance & Charles Post’s Case Studies in the Origins of Capitalism

February 27, 2020

ERIC MIELANTS   This is an interesting book which focuses on an old but very important topic: the origins of capitalism.

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Book Review of Yi Wu’s Negotiating Rural Land Ownership in Southwest China

December 15, 2019

XU SIYUAN Negotiating Rural Land Ownership in Southwest China: State, village, family, by Yi Wu. Honolulu: University of Hawai‘i Press.  2018. Pp. xiii+282. $ 80 (hb); $28 (pb). ISBN-13: 9780824846770 and 9780824876807 This is an excerpt of the review of the book. Read the complete review here.    In Negotiating Rural Land Ownership in Southwest China,…

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Book review of Nandini Sundar’s The Burning Forest

August 17, 2017

This post is written by Christian Lund who is Professor of Development, Resource Management, and Governance, at the Department of Food and Resource Economics, at Copenhagen University.

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Book Review of Bina Agarwal’s Gender Challenges

June 28, 2017

An activist scholar and former President of the International Association for Feminist Economics, Bina Agarwal is best known for her (1994) monumental A Field of One’s Own: Gender and Land Rights in South Asia.

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