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A Revolution Down on the Farm

The Transformation of American Agriculture since 1929
Lu par : Kevin Pierce
Durée : 11 h et 7 min
Prix : 23,93 €
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Description

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.

The book is published by University of Kentucky Press.

©2008 Paul K. Conkin (P)2013 Redwood Audiobooks

Critiques

"This cogent, thorough history should prove fascinating for anyone interested in the changing landscape of American agriculture." ( Publishers Weekly)
"For a generation of students who know little about the agricultural past, Conkin's book will provide an important and well-rounded overview." ( Agricultural History)

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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Joanne
  • 26/01/2014

Excellent review of farming history in US

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Very thought provoking.

Any additional comments?

I wish it had a PDF supplement of the some of the charts or tables of figures.

3 sur 3 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Art
  • 22/06/2013

Effective and concise account of American farming

Great, balanced history of American agriculture with a little bit of everything, personal farm experience, economic history, science and technology, organic vs conventional foods. Particularly deep on policy history which may require re-reading to fully appreciate for this non-social scientist.

2 sur 2 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Sean O'Shea
  • 02/10/2016

Outstanding

I was riveted from start to finish. The writing was excellent and the narration was pleasant.

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Brennan King
  • 18/09/2016

Very informative, could be sightly more organized.

Excellent information overall but it jumps around a lot. I think a more thoughtful organization could have made the text more concise.

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • KC
  • 12/01/2018

Well researched overwiew

Lots of eye opening information put forward in mostly unbiased way. The author’s lifetime of experience working with farms gives him a broad understanding of the many turning gears that make American agriculture move, however it also made it difficult for him to see success in ag that strayed from past technology.

Really wish I had an ebook for the copious amounts of data. Will have to buy a paper copy to use as a reference.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Andy
  • 23/12/2016

One man's opinion

While interesting and factually correct, It is mostly a synopsis of governmental farm policy and an advocate for more such policies. Also, advocates for more organic production and higher food prices.

I personally find it a little Malthusian in its outlook.