[Marxism] NEW FROM VERSO: LAND GRABBING by Stefano Liberti

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Wed Nov 27 10:26:42 MST 2013


by Stefano Liberti





"One of the most thoughtful analyses of agrarian capitalism is also one of the twenty-first century's most gripping travelogues. Liberti's precise, occasionally wicked, sketches aren't merely enjoyable for their own sake. They're a reminder that both the commission of and the struggle against the global food crisis involves real people." - Raj Patel, author of Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System

"Exemplary reportage ... accurate, engaged, honest." - CORRIERE DELLA SERA, in praise of A SUD DI LAMPEDUSA

"Liberti writes with the curiosity and passion of the great journalists of the past."- INTERNAZIONALE, in praise of A SUD DI LAMPEDUSA


A shocking expos? of how modern-day corporations and governments are raiding the Third World

To the governments and corporations buying up vast tracts of the Third World, it is 'land leasing'; to its critics, it is nothing better than 'land grabbing' - the engine powering a new era of colonialism.

In this arresting account of how millions of hectares of fertile soil are stolen to feed wealthy westerners thousands of miles away, journalist Stefano Liberti takes readers on a tour of contemporary exploitation. It is a journey encompassing a Dutch-owned model farm in Ethiopia; a conference in Riyadh, where representatives of Third World governments compete to attract Saudi investors; meetings in Rome where the fate of nations is decided; and the headquarters of the Movement of Landless Workers in S?o Paulo.

Since the food crisis of 2007-8, when the cost of staples such as rice and corn went through the roof, the race to acquire land in the southern hemisphere has become more intense than ever. Land Grabbing is the shocking story of how one half of the world is starved to feed the other.



In the course of his tour, Liberti asks a multitude of difficult questions. Is it right that impoverished African governments are falling over each other to offer land cheaply - and even for free - to Saudi sheikhs and Dutch agronomists who export everything they grow to the rich world? Can anything other than politics justify the boom in US ethanol production? Should we allow five big commodities trading houses to dominate the market in certain grains? Or sharp-suited financial investors to buy up land in search of outsize returns?



Stefano Liberti is a journalist at the foreign desk of the Italian daily newspaper IL MANIFESTO. He is the author of two books: LO STIVALE METICCIO, a short critical guide documenting the condition of contemporary foreign immigrants in Italy, and A SUD DI LAMPEDUSA, a groundbreaking exploration of the routes of Sub-Saharan African migrations to Western Europe. He is the winner of the 2008 Luchetta Prize, 2010 Carletti Prize, and 2010 Indro Montanelli Prize for his writing.


Hardback / ISBN: 9781781681176  / $24.95 / ?14.99 / $27.95CAN / 864 pages

For more information on LAND GRABBING: JOURNEYS IN THE NEW COLONIALISM or to buy the book visit: http://www.versobooks.com/books/1446-land-grabbing


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