“The complexity of this whole world syndrome can be overwhelming, and yet to evade the complexity by taking the system apart to treat the problems one at a time can produce disasters. The great failings of scientific technology have come from posing problems in too small a way. Problems have to be solved in their rich complexity” [i]
There is nothing that connects public health with ecology and social justice as much as the fact that we are but one hungry species among millions of others. The basic need to fill our bellies is at the heart of human organization, especially the control of land and labour.
As societies have become more complex and globally intertwined, the production of food is more and more distanced from those who control the means of its production. Changing ownership structures have long brought the consolidation of land and labour, seeds and breeds, fertilizer and pest control, into fewer and fewer hands. This industrialization and commodification of food systems has had serious and far-reaching consequences, drastically affecting the determining conditions for people everywhere to lead healthy lives.
Land, Labour, and Liberation will examine stories from the struggle to bring control of the global food system back into the hands of the people. The questions we must ask cut across divides of discipline, taking as their basis a shared project of liberation from systems of oppression and structural violence. The rich complexity of these struggles include political, economic, historical, cultural, and epidemiological stories, and my focus will be on the way networks of power manifest themselves in the bodies of those most vulnerable and affected.