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Food Production Argumentative Essay


Before colonization, there existed peasant societies which practiced self-sustaining peasant farming. This farming system grew food for only local consumption with very little excess which was normally thrown away as manure. First, there existed local landlords who could usually be given extra crops and animals, and had an elite cuisine. When colonialists came into those peasant communities, first they replaced and sometimes incorporated the local landlords. They then forced the peasants to start producing crops for export and sometimes introduced different crops from other parts of the world.

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The second pattern of farming introduced by colonialists is known as monoculture. Colonialists took indigenous people land by force and specialized in growing of a single crop whose produce was sent away from production community to the colonial countries. This led to disconnection between what is grown to what is eaten. From then on money determined what people ate.

Due to dependency on monoculture, non-producing countries became dependent on food grown in producing countries. This created trade and led to merchants encouraging plantation owners to grown more exotic crop for export. The demand grew to outstrip the plantations and went back to encouraging peasants to grow monoculture crops so as to earn money through their sale.

Colonization also caused major movement of human, plants, and animals. This led to food exchange from one country to another and also people exchanged knowledge on how they produced similar food products in different ways thus creating adaptive crop production techniques.

Ways a household structure determines how people acquire and share food
Before money came to determine how acquired food through trade, many communities lived in family households with a dominant male as the head of the family. Such a home was considered as the workplace where every capable being belonging to that home worked in the farm. As the use of money became the central part of human lives, people had to move from their own farms and go work for wages. Consequently, people fled the villages to the cities to look for jobs in the new industries. The employers took advantage of this movement and hired the cheapest labor force they could get in which case it was women and children. Labor laws were later constituted to protect the children and favor men in allocating more working hours. This led to reduction in competition for jobs and thus restoring men as the breadwinner of the family. This relegated women to performing only domestic duties with no pay. The household from then created a man breadwinner and visualized women as too soft for the vicious worlds of politics and commerce and hence unable to provide food in a household.

The structure created with a man as the breadwinner led to inadequate family income as few men could earn high enough to support the whole family. This led to change in approach on how a household earned money to support itself. It led to the relegated woman to start working to earn something extra to support themselves. This kind of household structure was flawed since instead of men calling for higher pay for their working wives, they were only thinking about how they could earn more through the union. It is therefore clear the structure of a house determines the breadwinners acquires food and shares with all others who does not.

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Work Cited
Bonnie J. Fox, “The Rise and Fall of rhe Breadwinner-Homemaker Family,” in Bonnie J. Fox,
ed., Family Patterns and Gender Relations (Toronto: Oxford Univer­sity Press, 1993), 147158.
Martha May, “Bread Before Roses: American Workingmen, Labor Unions and the Family
Wage,” in Fox, ed., Family Patterns and Gender Relations, 135-145.
See Vandana Shiva, Monocultures of the Mind: Perspectives on Biodiversity and Biotechnology
(London: Zed Books, 1993); Mintz, “Eating and Being”; Harriet Friedmann, “Going in Circles: The Political Ecology of Food and Agriculture,” in Raymond Grew, ed., Food in Gwbal History (Boulder, CO: Westview, forthcoming).

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