Sunday, September 06, 2015
Trish Glazebrook on Vandana Shiva, Heidegger, and how agriculture is now a womanized food industry.
Shiva’s assessment does not, however, have a theoretical connection between technoscience and capital, other than historical contingency and a mass of case studies showing how particular technologies have served to empower colonizers. Heidegger’s account of the mathematization of nature can provide that theoretical link. Once the link is made, reflection upon technology is not so essential, and confrontation with it not so decisive—as if Ereignis, the event of being that determines a historical epoch, is ever in any way in human control. Rather, women’s agricultural practices in the global South provide a quiet revolution, an unremarked model of care in the daily reproduction of the material conditions of life. For their work is not a trivial exercise of a small group. According to the FAO some three decades ago, women are globally 70% of agricultural workers and 80% of food producers. More recently, in Ghana, for example, women were growing 70% of food crops in 2003 (GPRS I 2003), but 87% by 2010 (Social Watch Coalition 2010). Women’s agriculture is a practice that opens worlds for billions.
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