Seeds. Food Networks And Politics: Different Ontologies In Relation To Food Sovereignty In Ecuador

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Abstract

In this thesis I explore the ontological proposal of food sovereignty and discuss the possibilities offered by studies like this one to the attempts of the social sciences to explain - in a symmetrical way - that are developed between humans and other entities at the moment of food production, processing and consumption. In this effort I combine ethnography and history. I maintain that in countries such as Ecuador, food networks such as the lupin, Lupino mutabilis Sweet, by not establishing ontological differences between nature and culture, promote the implementation of food sovereignty in practice, as long as agricultural policies and science and technology (S&T) allow the autonomous development of such networks. More specifically, food networks in the Andean highlands have functioned in a rhizomatic manner, without establishing hierarchies among entities of different ontologies: food as goods or food as gifts, society and nature, and have spread seamlessly between the city and the countryside. This analysis allows me to demonstrate that these networks can promote food sovereignty, because they condenses an ontology different from that of modernity in terms of the cultivation, processing and consumption of food. Based on these findings, I analyze the rationality of science and technology policies and the current policies of the Ecuadorian State. I argue that such policies go against the logic of the food webs. Food sovereignty is an attainable objective if the policies of the Ecuadorian government contribute to the strengthening of food networks, creating new links so that they can evade the agribusiness model.
Translated title of the contributionSemillas. Redes de alimentos y política: Diferentes ontologías relacionadas con la soberanía alimentaria en Ecuador
Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherWageningen University Press
ISBN (Print)978-94-6257-490-8
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2015

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