Cultivating Socialism

Venezuela, ALBA, and the Politics of Food Sovereignty

Title Details

Pages: 238

Illustrations: 8 tables, 8 figures

Trim size: 6.000in x 9.000in

Formats

Paperback

Pub Date: 05/15/2024

ISBN: 9-780-8203-5794-2

List Price: $29.95

Hardcover

Pub Date: 05/15/2024

ISBN: 9-780-8203-5795-9

List Price: $114.95

eBook

Pub Date: 05/15/2024

ISBN: 9-780-8203-5796-6

List Price: $29.95

eBook

Pub Date: 05/15/2024

ISBN: 9-780-8203-6603-6

List Price: $29.95

Cultivating Socialism

Venezuela, ALBA, and the Politics of Food Sovereignty

How peasants, workers, and states attempted to redress the inequities of commercial agriculture across the Latin American region.

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Launched in 2004, the Latin American regional institution of ALBA (Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América: Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America) sought to overcome the historical legacies of neocolonial domination by consecrating the values of cooperation, inclusive development, and popular power.

As part of a region-wide effort among states and social movements to break out of the the destructive effects of capitalist agriculture, the elevation of food sovereignty—based on the protection of rural livelihoods, land redistribution, and sustainable agricultural production (agroecology)—became a cornerstone of ALBA’s development policy. And yet, these regional aspirations barely saw the light of day, while Venezuela (the beating heart of ALBA) experienced the worst food crisis in its history. How did this come to pass?

Based on extensive fieldwork in Venezuela, where the majority of ALBA’s food policies reside, Cultivating Socialism provides the first in-depth study of the ways in which peasants, workers, and states working through ALBA attempted to redress the inequities of commercial agriculture and the limits and contradictions encountered on the road to a regional food sovereignty regime. With his analysis of the politics of food sovereignty within ALBA, Rowan Lubbock offers important lessons about how we might think about emancipatory politics today and in the future.

Rowan Lubbock's book is an incisive, well-informed, and insightful contribution to the critical understanding of the social struggle behind the food sovereignty project in the rise and fall of the ALBA-TCP. Unraveling how this initiative for regional socialist transformation failed to become a regional food sovereignty regime, the book is a must-read that offers an analysis beyond the partial explanations on the weaknesses of the Bolivarian revolution in Latin America.

—Ernesto Vivares, editor of Regionalism, Development, and the Post-Commodities Boom in South America

The most thought-provoking analysis of the fate of Venezuela's national and regional socialist project and the irreconcilable contradiction between cooperative and distributive forms of production and the expansion of state power and its consequences for social emancipation.

—Pia Riggirozzi, author of Advancing Governance in the South: What Roles for International Financial Institutions in Developing States?

About the Author/Editor

Rowan Lubbock is Lecturer in International Political Economy of Development at the Queen Mary University of London.