Silo as System: Infrastructural Interventions into the Political Economy of Wheat

By Ateya Khorakiwala, Harvard University § This post underscores how the seemingly straightforward and yet iconic American silo evolved into a different kind of storage infrastructure when it encountered India’s histories and geographies of wheat. The American grain elevator – a specific kind of silo – holds a singular place in the history of architectural … More Silo as System: Infrastructural Interventions into the Political Economy of Wheat

Engagement as Life Politics in the Colombian Amazon

By Kristina Lyons § On August 19, 2013, small farmers and miners, healthcare and transportation workers, educators and students, indigenous communities, afro-Colombians, and popular sectors at large mobilized across seventeen departments of Colombia in a National Agrarian and Popular Strike that was temporarily suspended in September.  After failed negotiations with the State, the strike continues, and … More Engagement as Life Politics in the Colombian Amazon

Campus Food Projects: Engines for a More Sustainable System?

By Peggy F. Barlett § Back in 2005, as Emory University embraced sustainability as part of a new strategic plan, it was the physicians on the visioning committee who insisted on including food as a priority. Recognizing that environmental, economic, health, and social justice concerns intertwined with food, the committee encouraged local sourcing of vegetables, … More Campus Food Projects: Engines for a More Sustainable System?

Sustainability and Food Production in the Hoosier Heartland: Learning through Local Engagement

By Cailín E. Murray with contributions from her students Whitney Lingle and Britny Burton § Once a booming agricultural and factory town, Muncie, Indiana, is today a post-industrial rustbelt city grappling with questions about its economic and environmental futures. As heavy industries left town, Muncie’s economy has flagged, leaving some 24% of its residents at … More Sustainability and Food Production in the Hoosier Heartland: Learning through Local Engagement

In the Trenches: Collaborative Conservation in a Contested West

by Thomas E. Sheridan § For the last fifteen years, I’ve worked as a volunteer – a citizen anthropologist – in the collaborative conservation movement sweeping across the American West.  I co-founded the Arizona Common Ground Roundtable in 1997.  For the next five years, we (the Roundtable) sponsored forums across the state to bring ranchers, … More In the Trenches: Collaborative Conservation in a Contested West

From Conservation to Eco-Toilets to Organic Markets: The Evolution of a Chinese Environmental NGO

by Edwin Schmitt § The story of Wildgrass is one of organizational adaptation to the dynamism of present-day China’s politics and its rapidly changing social and environmental needs. After four years of working with the organization, I consider my role in Wildgrass as more of an “exchange” than an “engagement” because of our reciprocal relations. … More From Conservation to Eco-Toilets to Organic Markets: The Evolution of a Chinese Environmental NGO

The Lores of Local Food: Different Ways of Being Local and Eating Locally

by Dvera I. Saxton § Throughout the course of my research, I’ve seen how there is no one way to eat locally or to farm sustainably. These concepts and practices are quite fluid and change based on context, but also with the flash of a dollar sign. The “Loca-vore” movement is but one incarnation of … More The Lores of Local Food: Different Ways of Being Local and Eating Locally