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Subsistence and Economic Development Ronald E. Seavoy

Subsistence and Economic Development

Ronald E. Seavoy

Published August 30th 2000
ISBN : 9780275967819
Hardcover
296 pages
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 About the Book 

Seavoy insists that development economics is a failed discipline because it does not recognize the revolutionary difference between subsistence and commercial social values. Seavoy demonstrates that commercial labor norms are essential for producingMoreSeavoy insists that development economics is a failed discipline because it does not recognize the revolutionary difference between subsistence and commercial social values. Seavoy demonstrates that commercial labor norms are essential for producing assured food surpluses in all crop years and an assured food surplus is essential for sustaining the development process.The commercialization of food production is a political process, as in the term political economy. If peasants have a choice, they will not voluntarily perform commercial labor norms. Central governments must overcome peasant resistance to performing commercial labor norms by various forms of coercion. The most historically effective coercions are deprivation of peasant control of land use by foreclosure and eviction for excessive subsistence debts. Landless peasants are forced to become supervised paid laborers. Coercion is most effective when it is linked to money rewards for peasants who voluntarily transform themselves into yeomen cultivators or farmers. These commercially motivated cultivators and storekeepers become the resident commercializing agents in peasant villages who administer the central governments coercive and inducement policies. Based on extensive examples and field observation, this book is designed for use in courses that explore problems of economic development. Scholars and government policy makers will find the analysis equally provocative.