front cover of One Small Farm
One Small Farm
Photographs of a Wisconsin Way of Life
Craig Schreiner
Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2013

“People’s lives are written on the fields of old farms. The rows of the fields are like lines on a page, blank and white in winter, filled in with each year’s story of happiness, disappointment, drought, rain, sun, scarcity, plenty. The chapters accumulate, and people enter and leave the narrative. Only the farm goes on.”—From the Introduction

In One Small Farm, Craig Schreiner’s evocative color photographs capture one family as they maintain the rhythms and routines of small farm life near Pine Bluff, Wisconsin. “Milk in the morning and milk at night. Feed the cows and calves. Plant crops. Grind feed. Chop and bale hay. Cut wood. Clean the barn. Spread manure on the fields. Plow snow and split wood in winter. In spring, pick rocks from the fields. Cultivate corn. Pick corn. Harvest oats and barley. Help calves be born. Milk in the morning and milk at night.”
There’s much more to life on the farm than just chores, of course, and Schreiner captures the rhythms and richness of everyday life on the farm in all seasons, evoking both the challenges and the joys and providing viewers a window into a world that is quickly fading. In documenting the Lamberty family’s daily work and life, these thoughtful photos explore larger questions concerning the future of small farm agriculture, Wisconsin cultural traditions, and the rural way of life.


front cover of Opium
Uncovering the Politics of the Poppy
Pierre-Arnaud Chouvy
Harvard University Press, 2010

Known to the Greeks as opos or opion, as afiun in Persian and Arabic, and fuyung in Chinese, opium is at once a palliative and a poison. Its exotic origins, its literary associations, and the properties that are, often erroneously, attributed to it have ensured an ongoing air of mystery.

Pierre-Arnaud Chouvy reveals the long and fascinating history of a powerful and addictive drug and explores the changing fortunes of the modern-day illicit opium trade, especially in the remote regions of Asia. He answers key questions: Why have anti-drug policies failed despite four decades of increasing effort? And what are the shortcomings and limitations of forced eradication, alternative development, "silver bullets," and other quick fixes? In answering these questions, Chouvy draws upon geography, anthropology, politics, and development studies. He shows that the history of opium production is unexpectedly linked to the history of Afghanistan.

A compelling account of a narcotic as old as humanity, Opium offers powerful insights into the complex politics and economics of the poppy in the world today.


front cover of Organic Coffee
Organic Coffee
Sustainable Development by Mayan Farmers
Maria Elena Martinez-Torres
Ohio University Press, 2006
Despite deepening poverty and environmental degradation throughout rural Latin America, Mayan peasant farmers in Chiapas, Mexico, are finding environmental and economic success by growing organic coffee. Organic Coffee: Sustainable Development by Mayan Farmers provides a unique and vivid insight into how this coffee is grown, harvested, processed, and marketed to consumers in Mexico and in the north.

Maria Elena Martinez-Torres explains how Mayan farmers have built upon their ethnic networks to make a crucial change in their approach to agriculture. Taking us inside Chiapas, Mexico's poorest state and scene of the 1994 Zapatista uprising, she examines the anatomy of the ongoing organic coffee boom and the fair-trade movement. The organic coffee boom arose as very poor farmers formed cooperatives, revalued their ethnic identity, and improved their land through organic farming. The result has been significant economic benefits for their families and ecological benefits for the future sustainability of agriculture in the region.

Organic Coffee refutes the myth that organic farming is less productive than chemical-based agriculture and gives us reasons to be hopeful for indigenous peoples and peasant farmers

front cover of Organized Agriculture and the Labor Movement before the UFW
Organized Agriculture and the Labor Movement before the UFW
Puerto Rico, Hawai’i, California
By Dionicio Nodín Valdés
University of Texas Press, 2011

Puerto Rico, Hawai'i, and California share the experiences of conquest and annexation to the United States in the nineteenth century and mass organizational struggles by rural workers in the twentieth. Organized Agriculture and the Labor Movement before the UFW offers a comparative examination of those struggles, which were the era's longest and most protracted campaigns by agricultural workers, supported by organized labor, to establish a collective presence and realize the fruits of democracy.

Dionicio Nodín Valdés examines critical links between the earlier conquests and the later organizing campaigns while he corrects a number of popular misconceptions about agriculture, farmworkers, and organized labor. He shows that agricultural workers have engaged in continuous efforts to gain a place in the institutional life of the nation, that unions succeeded before the United Farm Workers and César Chávez, and that the labor movement played a major role in those efforts. He also offers a window into understanding crucial limitations of institutional democracy in the United States, and demonstrates that the widespread lack of participation in the nation's institutions by agricultural workers has not been due to a lack of volition, but rather to employers' continuous efforts to prevent worker empowerment.

Organized Agriculture and the Labor Movement before the UFW demonstrates how employers benefitted not only from power and wealth, but also from imperialism in both its domestic and international manifestations. It also demonstrates how workers at times successfully overcame growers' advantages, although they were ultimately unable to sustain movements and gain a permanent institutional presence in Puerto Rico and California.


front cover of Our Precious Corn
Our Precious Corn
Rebecca M. Webster
Michigan State University Press, 2023
For the Oneida people, yukwanénste has two meanings: our corn and our precious. Corn has walked alongside the Oneida and other Haudenosaunee people since creation, playing an integral role in their daily and ceremonial lives throughout their often turbulent history. The relationship between corn and the Oneida has changed over time, but the spirit of this important resource has remained by their side, helping them heal along the way. In Our Precious Corn: Yukwanénste, author Rebecca M. Webster (Kanyʌʔtake·lu), an Oneida woman and Indigenous corn grower, weaves together the words of explorers, military officers, and anthropologists, as well as historic and other contemporary Haudenosaunee people, to tell a story about their relationships with corn. Interviews with over fifty Oneida community members describe how the corn has made positive impacts on their lives, as well as hopeful visions for its future. As an added bonus, the book includes an appendix of different cooking and preparation methods for corn, including traditional and modern recipes.

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