The Political Economy of Agrarian Extractivism analyzes how the Bolivian countryside is transformed by the development and expansion of the soy complex and reveals the extractive dynamics of capitalist industrial agriculture, while also challenging dominant discourses legitimating this model as a means to achieve inclusive and sustainable rural development. Ben McKay finds that within the context of Bolivia’s first Indigenous president, Evo Morales, and the Movement Towards Socialism, fundamental contradictions abound.
Ben M. McKay is an assistant professor of development and sustainability at the University of Calgary.
1 The Soy Complex in Latin America
2 Land Control: Bolivia’s Agrarian Structure and Frontier Expansion
3 State Control: The Politics of Agrarian Change
4 Value-Chain Control: Relations of Debt and Dependency
5 Agrarian Extractivism and the Politics of Control
'Academics and activists who are interested in the politics of agrarian, food, environmental, and political democratization issues must read McKay’s compelling book: an empirically rich and theoretically brilliant book on agrarian extractivism.'
Saturnino M. Borras Jr., professor of Agrarian Studies, International Institute of Social Studies; editor-in-chief of the Journal of Peasant Studies and co-author of The Politics of Transnational Agrarian Movements.
'Ben M. McKay provides an advanced analysis of the ways in which large-scale destructive agriculture operates, using its power to nullify various forms of resistance, while revealing how even those promising projects like Evo Morales’ “Agrarian Revolution” in Bolivia can end up promoting an (agro)extractivist model. This book is vital for anyone interested in deepening their analysis of contemporary agrarian issues and politics.'
Gonzalo Colque, executive director, Fundación tierra, Bolivia
'McKay’s powerful analysis challenges dominant discourses to reveal the highly extractive nature of the industrial soy complex in Bolivia. With rich empirical detail, he shows how the underlying dynamics of agrarian extractivism generate social exclusion and environmental harm.'
Jennifer Clapp, Canada Research Chair in Global Food Security and Sustainability and professor in the School of Environment, Resources and Sustainability at the University of Waterloo, Canada