Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Staying Alive: Women, Ecology, and Development” as Want to Read:
Staying Alive: Women, Ecology, and Development
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Staying Alive: Women, Ecology, and Development

4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  193 ratings  ·  15 reviews
A feminist and environmental justice classic, with a new introduction by Vandana Shiva

“ Extraordinary in the ease of its global and historical scopes and the clarity of its arguments.” —Women’s Review of Books

Since at least the days of Francis Bacon, the dominant view in the western world has framed technological and economic development as progress and championed that sam...more
Paperback, 240 pages
Published November 30th 2010 by South End Press (first published December 31st 1988)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Staying Alive, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Staying Alive

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 896)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Milda Longgeita Pinem
This book talks about the struggling of Indian Women to make the contra mainstream of developmentalism which endangered the ecology in india. Chipko's women are the model for this struggling. They used their local wisdom to maintain the nature. Shiva started from the concept of developmentalism which came from Truman's statement about the prosperity of the first world spreaded to the third world. Shiva saw the negative impacts of the western hegemony especially in ideal concept of development fo...more
missy ward-lambert
“To say that women and nature are intimately associated is not to say anything revolutionary. After all, it was precisely just such an assumption that allowed the domination of both women and nature. The new insight provided by rural women in the Third World is that women and nature are associated not in passivity but in creativity and in the maintenance of life… Most work on women and environment in the Third World has focused on women as special victims of environmental degradation. Yet the wo...more
This is a great book. I've been thinking about the forest and science and sustainable life. I want to study the science she calls the "ecological or feminine principal" and avoid reductionist science that forgets everything is connected. Some sections I highlighted while reading:

"The recovery of the feminine principle allows a transcendance and transformation of these patriarchal foundations of maldevelopment. It allows a redefinition of growth and productivity as categories linked to the produc...more
I picked up this book because I'm really interested in understanding more about ideas of imposed development versus "poverty"- how poverty is defined and perceived and how true poverty is caused often by the proposed "solutions" to it. I'm interested in the way Shiva sees the issues as gendered.

"It is useful to separate a cultural conception of subsistence living as poverty from the material experience of poverty that is a result of dispossession and deprivation. Culturally perceived poverty nee...more
Cambridge Programme for Sustainability Leadership
One of Cambridge Sustainability's Top 50 Books for Sustainability, as voted for by our alumni network of over 3,000 senior leaders from around the world. To find out more, click here.

An unusual yet compelling mixure of Hindu mythology and scientific data, this book traces the historical and conceptual roots of development as a project of gender ideology, and analyses how the particular economic assumptions of Western patriarchy, aimed exclusively at profits, have subjugated the more humane assum...more
Ike Sharpless
A solid introduction to ecofeminism in particular and Shiva's brand of anti-globalization agroecology more generally (although Earth Democracy provides more of an 'entry level' critique). As with most work of this nature, I think this book needs some serious parsing - as in, it's written in academese oppression-speak, and needs to be understood as such - but it contains some key insights about the gendering of science and related issues.
I really think this would be improved if she defined her terms. And wasn't so wanky.
Why i give five star for this book? Maybe, I can give 3 or 4. But not for this book. Im a girl with economic basic study. I learn about the theory and i suprise that economic history in this world is the story about the kolonialism. I found at almost literature people fighted with another. Why? Just because they need food or money? Or they need something more than it?

Along learn about economic, i know that every people have a motif economic when do something. If they want u to help then, they wi...more
Dense read. Each sentence packs a punch. Her perspective is utterly enticing and inspiring. Women, ecology, and development seems like it could never be in one sentence--other than an eco-feminist one. The way she dismantles an entire system of thought to blatantly say what we do to our women, as a society, is exactly what we do to our environment makes this worth reading.
Nick Mather
Shiva's critique of development (which she refers to as maldevelopment) and the western notion of progress is important. In this seminal work, she connects develoment with colonialism and the oppression of women. Her argument, backed up with sufficient facts and figures, is persuasive and moving, challenging readers to rethink development in the global south.
I just can't get into this "radical" scientific stance. Even though I sympathize and believe in feminism and sustainability (and spirituality), my intuition says there's something wrong here. Black and white feminism?

As another reviewer on Goodreads wrote, "it's written in academese oppression-speak..."
Thorough, moving, informative and incredibly profound. Useful as both a resource on women's approaches to environmental issues, and interesting as a piece on the author's personal POV.
Ally Hunter
I just pre-ordered this...can't wait to read it.
read partway thru. great book!
Chandni marked it as to-read
Sep 24, 2014
Elyse marked it as to-read
Sep 24, 2014
Zacaharias Jensonius
Zacaharias Jensonius marked it as to-read
Sep 22, 2014
Louise marked it as to-read
Sep 22, 2014
Maggie marked it as to-read
Sep 18, 2014
Grandmasmethlab marked it as to-read
Sep 18, 2014
Abhishek Anand
Abhishek Anand marked it as to-read
Sep 17, 2014
Sandi Worthen
Sandi Worthen marked it as to-read
Sep 14, 2014
Ellie White
Ellie White marked it as to-read
Sep 12, 2014
Cortney Kiyo
Cortney Kiyo marked it as to-read
Sep 11, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 29 30 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Ecofeminism
  • The Death of Nature: Women, Ecology, and the Scientific Revolution
  • Conquest: Sexual Violence and American Indian Genocide
  • Sisters of the Yam: Black Women and Self-Recovery
  • The Gender Knot: Unraveling Our Patriarchal Legacy
  • Women, Culture, and Politics
  • The Great Work: Our Way into the Future
  • Woman and Nature: The Roaring Inside Her
  • The Sacred Hoop: Recovering the Feminine in American Indian Traditions
  • The Creation of Patriarchy
  • Feminism FOR REAL: Deconstructing the Academic Industrial Complex of Feminism
  • All Our Relations: Native Struggles for Land and Life
  • Moving Beyond Words: Age, Rage, Sex, Power, Money, Muscles: Breaking Boundaries of Gender
  • The Revolution Starts at Home: Confronting Intimate Violence Within Activist Communities
  • Unbearable Weight: Feminism, Western Culture, and the Body
  • The Sexual Politics of Meat: A Feminist-Vegetarian Critical Theory
  • This Bridge We Call Home: Radical Visions for Transformation
  • Listening to the Land: Conversations about Nature, Culture and Eros
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 Earth Democracy: Justice, Sustainability, and Peace Water Wars: Privatization, Pollution, and Profit Soil Not Oil: Environmental Justice in an Age of Climate Crisis Biopiracy: The Plunder of Nature and Knowledge

Share This Book