Nature and Agriculture in the Indian Himalaya
Series: Yale Agrarian Studies Series
320 Pages, 5.50 x 8.50 x 0.93 in, 17 b-w illus.
- Published: Tuesday, 15 Jun 2021
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Shaila Seshia Galvin examines certified organic agriculture in India’s central Himalayas, revealing how the fraught concept of organic is less a material property of land or its produce than a quality produced in discursive, regulatory, and affective registers. Becoming Organic is a nuanced account of development practice in rural India, as it has unfolded through complex relationships forged among state authorities, private corporations, and new agrarian intermediaries.
“Becoming Organic is an outstanding, historically grounded work scrutinizing the processes through which “organic” as a characteristic of agricultural produce is assembled.”—Marc Edelman, City University of New York
“What does certified organic agriculture look like in a region that has never undergone agricultural modernization? Through this beautifully written ethnography, Galvin shows us that becoming organic is more than adopting a set of agronomic practices.”—Julie Guthman, author of Wilted: Pathogens, Chemicals, and the Fragile Future of the Strawberry Industry
“This is a remarkably well written, nuanced ethnography of how farmers in the Uttarakhand Himalaya of India ‘became organic,’ exploring the relationship between organic and industrial/conventional agriculture.”—Ian Scoones, author of The Politics of Uncertainty: Challenges of Transformation
“In this carefully researched and beautifully written book, Shaila Seshia Galvin carefully unfolds how the quality called ‘organic’ is constructed in everyday practices of state officials, farmers, and corporation representatives.”—Shafqat Hussain, author of The Snow Leopard and the Goat: Politics of Conservation in the Western Himalayas
“The ‘organic’ is often identified with an absence, specifically of pesticides. Galvin’s beautiful ethnography attends instead to presence, illuminating the situated labors that bring the organic into being in the Indian Himalaya.”—Sarah Besky, author of Tasting Qualities: The Past and Future of Tea
Download Becoming Organic: Nature and Agriculture in the Indian Himalaya as a free PDF, made available under Creative Commons.