“Peasant” is not a bad word … but what does it mean?!
Written By: Derek Freitas, Food Chains Campaign Coordinator for Eco Ruralis General Context The word “peasant” is used in all sorts of ways to mean different things by many groups of people across the world. It is indeed very hard to define. This is particularly problematic due to the fact that the majority of decision-makers related to establishing agricultural policy at the national, EU and global levels don’t have an accepted reference point for understanding one another in a basic sense. Often, the only time when self-ascribed “peasants” feel that they are accurately portrayed is when they explain what that word means to them. But, again, even they disagree based on cultural, historical, geographical and individual differences. Global Context The international peasant movement, La Via Campesina, calls for an International Convention on the Rights of Peasants and states the following in Article I of its own “Declaration on the Rights of Peasants – Women and Men”: “A peasant is a man or woman of the land, who has a direct and special relationship […]