The Persistence of Subsistence Agriculture

Life Beneath the Level of the Marketplace

By (author) Tony Waters

Paperback - £38.00

Publication date:

19 December 2006

Length of book:

272 pages


Lexington Books

ISBN-13: 9780739107683

The story told by The Persistence of Subsistence Agriculture begins 8,000 years ago as humans began using the land and weather to provide themselves with food, housing, and clothing. Productive farmers took care of most daily needs within the small conservative world in which they lived. This world organized around small-scale subsistence farming is ending as the ancient world of farmers has given away to that dominated by the modern marketplace. This book is about how the modern market world transformed these remote agricultural farmers. Waters uses diverse examples to illustrate how the modern market economy captured persistent subsistence farmers and forever altered life in 18th century Scotland, 19th century United States, 20th century Tanzania, and indeed, the entire modern world.
Tony Waters explains how costly economic development can be and how incompatible are the goals of subsistence farmers, yet he states the case for growth fairly too. This is a highly original work, based on Waters' personal experience of Tanzania, illuminated throughout by social science, and buttressed by rich, unexpected case studies of eighteenth-century Scotland and Daniel Boone's America. It will set tongues wagging in the development agencies.