Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The depeasantization of Lebanon: an authoritative article by Albert Dagher

Parts one and two of the most excellent article by Albert Dagher on the history of the depeasantization of Lebanon. The title is revealing: How the Lebanese rural space was emptied from its inhabitants. The author starts at the onset of the 18th century and covers in detail the policies and politics since independence. The thesis is of course simple and absolutely correct and he demonstrates it ably: Lebanon's agricultural (and food security) potential is unmet, simply because successive governments adopted an ultra liberal doctrine that benefited the rich who flourish under a rent economy. Ecology and climate have little to do with that. Farming is in decline because of politics and policies, and not because of environmental constraints. This is very very important to remembers as it runs against conventionally received wisdom that we should oppose. This is an absolute must read (in arabic).


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