Earth Democracy: Justice, Sustainability, and Peace
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Earth Democracy: Justice, Sustainability, and Peace

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  341 ratings  ·  31 reviews


A leading voice in the struggle for global justice, Vandana Shiva is a world-renowned environmental activist and physicist. In Earth Democracy, Shiva updates the struggles she helped bring to international attention—against genetic food engineering, culture theft, and natural resource privatization-—uncovering their links to the rising tide of fundamentalism, violence agai...more
Paperback, 200 pages
Published July 1st 2005 by South End Press
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Chris
While I agreed with most of the ideas this book was promoting, I felt that it was badly organized and highly repetitive. I also felt that Shiva was guilty of over-romanticizing the past, as she seems to suggest that, before the rise of capitalism and industrialization, there was some workers utopia, with farmers and laborers connecting to their non-commodified duties. Reading her book, you would think that exploitation was invented by modernization, rather than merely taken to a greater extreme....more
Natalie
The ideas in this book are brilliant, foundational, and very important. Shiva focuses on a few of the ways globalization and the global elite are devastating life for the rest of the planet - the destruction of biodiversity, the privatization of water, the takeover of food production, and the incalculable harm being caused to the planet.

I really appreciated the distinction she draws between the 3 different economies in play in the world: the natural economy (the work done by nature to provide re...more
Kathy
I love Vandana Shiva's environmental and food-related philosophies, and have wanted to read her for a while. Earth Democracy, while definitely resonating with me philosophically, was a little too touchy-feely and unfocused in my opinion. Nonetheless, the book added to my knowledge base, and intertwined the concepts it claims in its title into an intelligent argument for greater consciousness of the multiple costs modern practices inflict on people and our world.
Carmen
This reads like a speech given to the United Nations Council or at some other world conference dedicated to saving us all, or a sermon at an eco-revival. Her writing is strong, clear-headed and to the point, no punches pulled, and if McCain had chosen her for his veep pick, I would be a republican now.
Maria Aprile
Surprisingly, I loved Shiva's book. She talks in circles a bit, but I enjoy, her almost stream of consciousness reflection on sustainability issues. Her writing style is either a love or hate relationship. It's very florid. Of course, its this that I love about it. It's a love letter to humankind about the earth, and the grievous wounds we have caused her. I think the earth should be held dear to our hearts as human beings. As I reflecting in my reading of the book, if we treated our mothers the...more
Pau Toro
I wish Shiva would give more concrete examples instead of repeating herself so much, but it was very nice reading a book on development that was optimistic and provided a framework of solutions. The framework can be a bit vague, but the point is that one-size-does-not-fit-all.
Alice
I was a bit disappointed by this book. The author made a very good case for the evils of big-ag and privatized water (topics of other books she's written). But, she also tried to say that free trade/global business was the root of all evil. I generally agree that those are both bad for the world; but they're the cause of genocide, slavery, and poverty? Last time I checked, those things happened for a long time before giant multi-national corporations were established. Overall I agree with her ma...more
Claire S
Having seen multiple films lately about the WTO Seattle event, and remembering the 00 election - so affected by Nader - and then of course living through everything since as well, I'm really interested in learning what those who have been fully involved in these efforts throughout this time are thinking since the Iraq occupation and everything else.. Seems like the whole context has changed hugely now atleast 3 times since Seattle (9/11, Iraq, Global Recession) and so am wondering what the progr...more
Benjamin
Some radical and different ways of thinking which I could agree with. But her writing style is very repetitive, and her proposal for an alternative economic system sometimes feels idealistic without the a clear theoretical basis for its potential success.
Shazia
Dec 31, 2012 Shazia added it
Yet another book I'm reading now...The first part is very general - a lot of moralistic-stand-up-against-injustice platitudes. But it starts to get better once she traces some of the history behind environmental destruction, exploitation, and injustice. If you're loyal to the Brits, this might cause you some earth-shattering discomfort.
Aurali
Although I agree with many of Ms. Shiva's sentiments, the writing style of this book was a definate turn-off. It was equivalent to a 200 page speech in which she is pounding her fist. I was really bothered by her referencing also. She frequently cited her own previous publications rather than original sources of ideas/quotes.
Cooper
A good leftist perspective on the sustainability and the nature of free-market capitalism, democracy, and free trade. There is some really interesting commentary on intellectual property rights, international patent law, and movements in agriculture to counter free trade and globalization.
Jeffrey Hake
Another book I didn't finish, but this time because Vandana Shiva's tone is caustic and misleading. I read the introduction and then got tired of her pushing her pet projects on me and not really explaining or backing up what she felt were the problems of the world.
Lauren
Jul 11, 2007 Lauren rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: ppl who want to learn more about globalization and GMO
A passionate indictment of capitalism from a human rights and ecologist perspective. Her most powerful chapter is her first, where she deftly points out the market economy's reliance on (and Faustian destruction of) the living economies of nature and sustenance.
Pam
I don't find her the easiest to read (probably partly because I'm American and baffled by extensive descriptions of specifics of politics and ecology of a country I've never been do), but I wish everyone had read this book.
Violet
I read this for my ecofeminism class, and it was really interesting. Even more so than Shiva's other books, it really outlines what an alternative system (Earth Democracy) looks like. Informative and Inspiring.
Tatton
Oct 11, 2007 Tatton rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Amazing ecofeminist analysis, prescription, and real life examples on how to build a more just, peaceful, and sustainable world. Written very well in a unique style. Quite accessible.
Julianne
her politics i agree with, her research and discussions of indian ag and gmo's i learn a lot from, her writing i find easily digestible and organized.
Carianne Ragozzino
Vandana Shiva is one of the most profound voices in the contemporary environmental movement. When reading this book, be prepared to get angry.
Widyantoa
Jul 15, 2007 Widyantoa rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: friends
really interesting point of view. build my broader perspective about economy. can't tell a lot now, am still reading it.
Bart
Vandana Shiva provides great eco-feminist analysis on imperialist capitalist destruction of environments and livelihoods.
Steven Salaita
Shiva is a deeply committed and humane writer. She ties eco-criticism to social justice in brilliant ways.
Julia Glassman
Everything she has to say is fantastic, but she didn't say it very well in this particular book.
Colleen Mccreight
It is a really good book. Important to read to be informed about the issues.
Lisa
Feb 27, 2010 Lisa rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: own
A must read for everyone who consumes and plays a role on this planet.
MsBrie
Nov 26, 2007 MsBrie added it
I totally love Vandana Shiva
Margo
Vandana Shiva is amazing.
Katelyn
IT'S AWESOME SO FAR
Chase
Changed Me....
feathers
Jul 22, 2011 feathers added it
Shelves: false-starts
i gave up?
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A major figurehead of the alter-globalization movement as well as a major role player in global Ecofeminism, Dr. Vandana Shiva is recipient to several awards for her services in human rights, ecology and conservation. Receiving her Ph.D in physics at the University of Western Ontario in 1978, Dr. Vandana Shivas attentions were quickly drawn towards ecological concerns.
More about Vandana Shiva...
Stolen Harvest: The Hijacking of the Global Food Supply Water Wars: Privatization, Pollution, and Profit Soil Not Oil: Environmental Justice in an Age of Climate Crisis Biopiracy: The Plunder of Nature and Knowledge Staying Alive: Women, Ecology and Development

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“In nature's economy the currency is not money, it is life.” 58 likes
“Whenever we engage in consumption or production patterns which take more than we need, we are engaging in violence.” 27 likes
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