- Category: TOW 2011
Award-winning writer, academic and activist, Dr. RAJ PATEL was born in the United Kingdom. He holds degrees from Oxford University, the London School of Economics and Cornell University and has been a visiting scholar at Yale.
Dr. Patel is the author of the internationally acclaimed Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System and the New York Times and international bestseller, The Value of Nothing. He has also co-authored the books Food Rebellions, and Promised Land. Patel’s work on sustainability, food, and economics has been translated into over a dozen languages. He has also published widely in the academic press, with articles in peer-reviewed philosophy, politics, sociology and economics journals.
As a Fellow at the Institute for Food and Development Policy, Patel has testified in front of US Congress on the origins of the 2008 food crisis and continues to advise the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food.
Patel has lectured to governments, universities, unions, progressive groups and the media in the US, Canada, the UK, Spain, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, India, Thailand, South Africa, and Zimbabwe, on subjects ranging from agriculture, climate change, and social movements, to the subjects of slums and fast food. He has also appeared on CNN, BBC, DemocracyNow!, and written for the Guardian, Mail on Sunday, Observer, The Nation and Los Angeles Times, among others.
Patel’s political preoccupations are aptly reflected in his response around his motivation for writing: “Writing is a form of activism – a way to witness, to resist, to create and to recruit.”
He works in support of a range of social movements, including the ‘Abahlali baseMjondolo Shackdweller Movement South Africa’.
He is currently both a Visiting Scholar at UC Berkeley's Centre for African Studies, and an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, in Durban, South Africa.
Food Rebellions (with Eric Holt-Gimenez and Annie Shattuck), Food First Books, 2009
The Value of Nothing, Portobello Books, 2009
Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System, Portobello, 2007
Promised Land (with Peter Rosset and Michael Courville), Food First Books, 2006