A Revolution Down on the Farm

A Revolution Down on the Farm: The Transformation of American Agriculture since 1929 charts the profound changes in farming that have occurred during author Paul K. Conkin’s lifetime.

Author: Paul Conkin

Publisher: University Press of Kentucky

ISBN: 9780813173153

Category: History

Page: 240

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At a time when food is becoming increasingly scarce in many parts of the world and food prices are skyrocketing, no industry is more important than agriculture. Humans have been farming for thousands of years, and yet agriculture has undergone more fundamental changes in the past 80 years than in the previous several centuries. In 1900, 30 million American farmers tilled the soil or tended livestock; today there are fewer than 4.5 million farmers who feed a population four times larger than it was at the beginning of the century. Fifty years ago, the planet could not have sustained a population of 6.5 billion; now, commercial and industrial agriculture ensure that millions will not die from starvation. Farmers are able to feed an exponentially growing planet because the greatest industrial revolution in history has occurred in agriculture since 1929, with U.S. farmers leading the way. Productivity on American farms has increased tenfold, even as most small farmers and tenants have been forced to find other work. Today, only 300,000 farms produce approximately ninety percent of the total output, and overproduction, largely subsidized by government programs and policies, has become the hallmark of modern agriculture. A Revolution Down on the Farm: The Transformation of American Agriculture since 1929 charts the profound changes in farming that have occurred during author Paul K. Conkin’s lifetime. His personal experiences growing up on a small Tennessee farm complement compelling statistical data as he explores America’s vast agricultural transformation and considers its social, political, and economic consequences. He examines the history of American agriculture, showing how New Deal innovations evolved into convoluted commodity programs following World War II. Conkin assesses the skills, new technologies, and government policies that helped transform farming in America and suggests how new legislation might affect farming in decades to come. Although the increased production and mechanization of farming has been an economic success story for Americans, the costs are becoming increasingly apparent. Small farmers are put out of business when they cannot compete with giant, non-diversified corporate farms. Caged chickens and hogs in factory-like facilities or confined dairy cattle require massive amounts of chemicals and hormones ultimately ingested by consumers. Fertilizers, new organic chemicals, manure disposal, and genetically modified seeds have introduced environmental problems that are still being discovered. A Revolution Down on the Farm concludes with an evaluation of farming in the twenty-first century and a distinctive meditation on alternatives to our present large scale, mechanized, subsidized, and fossil fuel and chemically dependent system.

A Revolution Down on the Farm

Agriculture is the most fundamental of all human activities. Today, those who till the soil or tend livestock feed a world population of approximately 6.5 billion.

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ISBN: OCLC:747946658

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Agriculture is the most fundamental of all human activities. Today, those who till the soil or tend livestock feed a world population of approximately 6.5 billion. Fifty years ago, the planet could not have sustained such a large population, and according to present projections, farmers will have to feed nine billion people by 2050. The greatest agricultural revolution in history has occurred in the last fifty years, with farmers in the United States leading the way. America's declining number of farms, however, comes as a surprise to many and may have dramatic implications. Paul K. Conkin's A Revolution Down on the Farm: The Transformation of American Agriculture since 1929 charts the profound changes in farming that have occurred during his lifetime. Conkin's personal experience growing up on a small Tennessee farm complements compelling statistical data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Using economic and historical analysis, Conkin assesses the skills, new technologies, and government policies that helped transform American farming. He clarifies the present status of a subsidized, large-scale, mechanized, and chemically supported agriculture, evaluates its environmental and human costs, and surveys alternatives to a troubled, widely challenged system.

American Agriculture

Anderson, Capitalist Pigs: Pigs, Pork, and Power in America (Morgantown: West Virginia University Press, 2019); Larry ... July 14, 2015; Paul K. Conkin, Revolution Down on the Farm: The Transformation of American Agriculture Since 1929 ...

Author: Mark V. Wetherington

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield

ISBN: 9781442269286

Category: Cooking

Page: 240

View: 846

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Written from the perspective of ordinary people, this book traces the history of agriculture in the United States from early colonists until today. The first concise history of American agriculture in 25 years, the author focuses attention on recent developments such as the decline of tobacco, green revolution, farm-to-table, and food security.

All the Facts

A History of Information in the United States Since 1870 James W. Cortada. 102. 103. 104. ... A Revolution Down on the Farm: The Transformation of American Agriculture since 1929 (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 2009): 148–149.

Author: James W. Cortada

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780190460679

Category: Information resources

Page: 688

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"A history of the role of information in the United States since 1870"--

Beyond the Mountains

Paul K. Conkin, A Revolution Down on the Farm: The Transformation of American Agriculture since 1929 (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 2008), 32. 59. Lee, Tennessee-Virginia Tri-Cities, 179; Bureau of Agricultural Economics, ...

Author: Drew A. Swanson

Publisher: University of Georgia Press

ISBN: 9780820353975

Category: Social Science

Page: 282

View: 941

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Beyond the Mountains explores the ways in which Appalachia often served as a laboratory for the exploration and practice of American conceptions of nature. The region operated alternately as frontier, wilderness, rural hinterland, region of subsistence agriculture, bastion of yeoman farmers, and place to experiment with modernization. In these various takes on the southern mountains, scattered across time and space, both mountain residents and outsiders consistently believed that the region’s environment made Appalachia distinctive, for better or worse. With chapters dedicated to microhistories focused on particular commodities, Drew A. Swanson builds upon recent Appalachian studies scholarship, emphasizing the diversity of a region so long considered a homogenous backwater. While Appalachia has a recognizable and real coherence rooted in folkways, agriculture, and politics (among other things), it is also a region of varied environments, people, and histories. These discrete stories are, however, linked through the power of conceptualizing nature and work together to reveal the ways in which ideas and uses of nature often created a sense of identity in Appalachia. Delving into the environmental history of the region reveals that Appalachian environments, rather than separating the mountains from the broader world, often served to connect the region to outside places.

Supermarket USA

... A Revolution Down on the Farm: The Transformation of American Agriculture Since 1929 (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 2008). On growth rates in the agricultural sector, see Sally H. Clarke, Regulation and the Revolution in ...

Author: Shane Hamilton

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 9780300240849

Category: History

Page: 288

View: 756

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America fought the Cold War in part through supermarkets—and the food economy pioneered then has helped shape the way we eat today Supermarkets were invented in the United States, and from the 1940s on they made their way around the world, often explicitly to carry American-style economic culture with them. This innovative history tells us how supermarkets were used as anticommunist weapons during the Cold War, and how that has shaped our current food system. The widespread appeal of supermarkets as weapons of free enterprise contributed to a “farms race” between the United States and the Soviet Union, as the superpowers vied to show that their contrasting approaches to food production and distribution were best suited to an abundant future. In the aftermath of the Cold War, U.S. food power was transformed into a global system of market power, laying the groundwork for the emergence of our contemporary world, in which transnational supermarkets operate as powerful institutions in a global food economy.

Russia s Food Revolution

On the transformation of American agriculture, see Paul K. Conkin, A Revolution Down on the Farm: The Transformation of American Agriculture Since 1929 (Lexington, KY: University of Kentucky Press, 2008), 1–30, and 94 95 96 97 98 99 100 ...

Author: Stephen K. Wegren

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781000178876

Category: Social Science

Page: 240

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This book analyzes the food revolution that has occurred in Russia since the late 1980s, documenting the transformation in systems of production, supply, distribution, and consumption. It examines the dominant actors in the food system; explores how the state regulates food; considers changes in patterns of food trade interactions with other states; and discusses how all this and changing habits of consumption have impacted consumers. It contrasts the grim food situation of 1980s and 1990s with the much better food situation that prevails at present and sets the food revolution in the context of the wider consumer revolution, which has affected fashion, consumer electronics, and other sectors of the economy.

A Companion to Global Environmental History

28 Goodman, Sorj, and Wilkinson, From Farming to Biotechnology, p. 35; Fitzgerald, Every Farm a Factory, p. 14; P. Conklin, A Revolution Down on the Farm: The Transformation of American Agriculture since 1929, Lexington, KY, ...

Author: J. R. McNeill

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 9781118977538

Category: History

Page: 560

View: 816

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Food Power

Paul Conkin, A Revolution Down on the Farm: The Transformation of American Agriculture since 1929 (Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky, 2008), 97–122. “Congress Eyes your Market Bill: How Much Is Food, How Much Is Frills?

Author: Bryan L. McDonald

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780190600686

Category:

Page: 264

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There is a widespread assumption that the American food system after World War II was transformed-toward an increasingly industrialized production of crops, more processed foods, and diets higher in fat, sugar, and calories-as part of a unified system. In this book, Bryan McDonald brings together the history of food, agriculture, and foreign policy to explore how food was deployed in the first decades of the Cold War to promote American national security and national interests, a concept referred to as food power. In the postwar years, Americans struggled to understand how an unprecedented abundance of food could be used to best advance U.S. goals and values. Was food a weapon, a commodity to be valued and exchanged through markets, or a substance to be provided to those in need? McDonald traces different visions of food power and shows how food formed an essential part of America's postwar modernization strategy and its vision of what it meant to be a stable, secure, and technologically advanced nation. Policymakers and experts helped build a new food system based around American agricultural surpluses that stabilized prices and food availability. This system averted a global-scale food crisis for almost three decades. The end of this food system in the early 1970s ushered in a much more precarious period in global food relations. By the late twentieth century, food politics had become a battleground in which the interests of security and foreign policy experts, farmers, businesses, and politicians contended with a growing social movement whose adherents worried about the role of food in contributing to conflict and inequality. Food Power argues that the ways postwar American policymakers and experts politically linked people and places around the world through food illuminates both America's role in the world during the mid-twentieth century and sheds light on contemporary food problems.

Putting the Barn Before the House

Women and Family Farming in Early Twentieth-Century New York Grey Osterud ... A Revolution Down on the Farm: The Transformation of American Agriculture since 1929 (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 2009); David B. Danbom, ...

Author: Grey Osterud

Publisher: Cornell University Press

ISBN: 9780801464171

Category: History

Page: 296

View: 860

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Putting the Barn Before the House features the voices and viewpoints of women born before World War I who lived on family farms in south-central New York. As she did in her previous book, Bonds of Community, for an earlier period in history, Grey Osterud explores the flexible and varied ways that families shared labor and highlights the strategies of mutuality that women adopted to ensure they had a say in family decision making. Sharing and exchanging work also linked neighboring households and knit the community together. Indeed, the culture of cooperation that women espoused laid the basis for the formation of cooperatives that enabled these dairy farmers to contest the power of agribusiness and obtain better returns for their labor. Osterud recounts this story through the words of the women and men who lived it and carefully explores their views about gender, labor, and power, which offered an alternative to the ideas that prevailed in American society. Most women saw "putting the barn before the house"-investing capital and labor in productive operations rather than spending money on consumer goods or devoting time to mere housework-as a necessary and rational course for families who were determined to make a living on the land and, if possible, to pass on viable farms to the next generation. Some women preferred working outdoors to what seemed to them the thankless tasks of urban housewives, while others worked off the farm to support the family. Husbands and wives, as well as parents and children, debated what was best and negotiated over how to allocate their limited labor and capital and plan for an uncertain future. Osterud tells the story of an agricultural community in transition amid an industrializing age with care and skill.