Date of Graduation

Spring 5-2015

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Department or Program

Environmental Studies

Number of Pages

94

First Advisor

Sonja Pieck

Abstract

This paper investigates how diversified and sustainable community-oriented producers in Maine perceive the opposition between industrial and local agriculture. It focuses on how the necessity of local food systems for long-term food security comes into conflict with the federal government’s farm policies as well as capitalist norms that functionally weaken these local systems. It questions how community farmers see their work in relation to this conflict between forces of power, and how they enact alternatives to domination when they are in the position of relative economic, political, and social disadvantage. To what extent do the farmers in this study think their philosophies and spaces are categorically different from those of the conventional food industry? To answer these questions, my paper tells the stories of how three farmers in Maine are developing innovative ways to continue to be culturally, personally, and economically viable in the context of a national food system that relies on cheap mass-produced agricultural mono-crops and eliminates the community aspect of food provision. It uses theories of resistance and power to argue that the farmers perceive their spaces of resistance as entangled with the spaces of domination they are seeking to subvert. Further, it shows how participation in spaces of domination can counterintuitively broaden the agency of farmers to shape and enact their own resistant conceptions of what forms of existence are possible

Components of Thesis

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