There is also a fascinating film of the agricultural situation of
farmers in Senegal, called "The Nguba Connection," by Swiss
TV-Zurich and WGBH-Boston, which I saw on public TV several years
ago (and which is explained as a case study in the textbook,
"Exploring Social Change" (either 1st or 2nd edition) by Charles L.
Harper of Creighton Univ.). Prentice Hall - Publishers
The farmers in Senegal have to sell their peanuts (nguba) at a low
price to the State, which sells them at a much higher price on the
international market to earn foreign exchange (that is not put
back into the countryside). To complete the circle, the film
looks at the French consumers who purchase the peanuts as peanut
oil, without knowing the story behind their purchase. Also, the
Senegalese farmer's situation is compared to a Georgia peanut
farmer, who has a government price support program and all of the
resources to help him succeed that the poor Senegalese farmer lacks.
In both countries the political system dramatically distorts the
agricultural and economic (and environmental) processes.
I am currently trying to track this film down to use in my
environmental sociology class, so if anyone can help me, I'd
appreciate it. The PBS catalogs don't have it and the media
resources folks here have run out of leads.
P.S. Does anyone know if the U.S. peanut program is still intact
under the new farm bill?
From: "E. Ann Clark" <ACLARK@crop.uoguelph.ca>
Subject: Re: references on agricultural dependence
Steve B. I have often heard reference made to the notion that
western countries have intentionally created dependence on the
products of their agriculture in developing countries which were
formerly - and presumably could still be - capable of feeding
themselves from their own resources if we had not intervened.
Without disputing this premise, may I ask you or others to direct me
to evidence of the very best documented and most irrefutable example
of where this was done?
What I'd like is one or a few references, in reputable journals or
books from respected publishing houses, to back up this thesis. What
little I've seen has been written in quite inflammatory and
condemnatory prose - which alienates and polarizes the very people who
should be listening - usually in left of center type books from small
radical publishing houses or obscure social science journals. I say
this not in a derogatory way, but rather as a statement of fact.
This type of literature is not usable for the audiences I typically
address. I need something that will at least give them grounds for
credibility. Hope you can help me out. Ann