What can we learn from the world of pastoralism for wider agrarian struggles?

27 January 2021

The Agrarian Conversations series aims to address strategic and urgent issues in and in relation to the rural world today. The format is conversational: 15 minutes input from the main speaker, 15 minutes from a panel of discussants, and 50 minutes open plenary (Q&A) discussion. A background paper is provided in advance to help facilitate a conversational format.

27 January 2021
13:00 CET

Pastoralists are some of the most marginalised people on the planet, but they have much to teach us all. Pastoralists make a living from livestock on extensive dry and montane rangelands across the world, continuously living with and from uncertainty. Like agrarian societies everywhere, pastoralists are confronted by the incursions of neoliberal capitalism: once remote pastoral regions become sites for investment and pastoralists’ livelihoods are undermined.

New relations of class, gender and generation emerge, with transformed practices of production, labour and market engagement emerging across pastoral settings. However, too often, pastoralists and settled agriculturalists are viewed as separate and mobilisations and movements rarely cross over. Yet, pastoralists’ responses to contemporary challenges highlight, for example, the importance of mobility, common use of resources and collective, networked social arrangements. Given increasingly common agrarian struggles, this first edition of Agrarian Conversations will explore the opportunities to learn from pastoralists, and the importance of seeking greater engagement across agrarian movements.


The Journal of Peasant Studies background paper for this webinar is available through this link: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/03066150.2020.1802249

A collective initiative of Journal of Peasant StudiesCASASPLAASICASYARAERPIPASTRESRRUSHES-5, and the Transnational Institute.