Soundings

Articles from Vol. 34, Autumn

America's Deputy Sheriff in South East Asia: Australia and Timor-Leste
Australia's Howard government pulled off its first 'regime change' between April and July this year, on the tiny new country of Timor-Leste (East Timor). Since late May 2006 Australia has had a military presence in East Timor, where it has presided...
A Perverse Subsidy: African Trained Nurses and Doctors in the NHS
The story goes that there are more Malawian doctors in Birmingham than there are in Malawi. Gareth Thomas (international development minister) and Rosie Winterton (health minister) (1) They say we don't need to hire overseas any more. We have trained enough...
Are We What We Eat?
When we buy food we are taking part in a vast global industry. No other human activity has had as great an impact on our planet as agriculture. Americans spend more than a trillion dollars on food every year. That's more than double what they spend...
Down to Earth Economics
It is hard to imagine that a high-consuming, long-hours, work-oriented society such as Britain could ever move to an ecologically sustainable and egalitarian economic form. Yet there are clear challenges to 'there is no alternative' thinking. Not the...
Ecowars
Soundings 34 engages with some of the issues in current ecological politics. As Noel Castree points out, although there is a lot of environmental chatter in the media, the dominant voices tend to be those of the liberal environmentalists--solutions...
Feeding the Seven Billion
In April 2005, the World Food Programme and the Chinese government jointly announced that food aid shipments to China would stop after the end of the year. But while hunger has been disappearing in China, it has been spreading in sub-Saharan Africa...
GM Crops: The Power in Food
In August 2001, people from Scotland's Black Isle, and the Moray Firth and Inverness areas in general, congregated in a lay-by beside a field near the village of Munlochy. The field was being sown with oilseed rape genetically modified to tolerate...
Notes on Contributors
Sarah Benton is associate editor of Soundings. Lester R. Brown is Founder and President of the Earth Policy Institute, a non-profit interdisciplinary research organisation based in Washington, DC. He has received many honorary degrees and prizes,...
Out There
In the 80s the struggle was very much about out there and trying to change out there; now it's about what do we want. Onyekachi Wambu, previous editor of Voice, BBC Radio 4, 5.4.06 There are a lot of people out there who feel they don't belong. Farah...
Rethinking Segregation
Concerns about ethnic segregation have taken centre stage in domestic analyses of the implications for multicultural Britain of the events of '9/11' and '7/7'. Yet, almost half a decade into the 'war on terror', we appear to be no closer to defining...
Shifting Sands
In May 2005 the Labour Party won their third consecutive election victory, something they had never previously achieved. But far from being celebrated on the left, a deep gloom has descended. Many in the Labour Party and wider labour movement are seriously...
Tackling Turbo Consumption
What do you see as the key trends or significant developments in American consumer society over the past decade? The first is the 'work and spend' culture. This is the idea that growth in work productivity gets channelled not into shorter hours...
The Dawn of the Second Half of the Age of Oil
Petroleum geologists know that oil and gas were formed only rarely--in time and place--in the earth's long geological past, which means that that they are finite resources, subject to depletion. Since production has to follow on from earlier discovery,...
The Future of Environmentalism
It's forty years since the birth of the modern environmental movement in the West and beyond. After a thrilling late 1960s infancy and a rather successful 1970s adolescence, the movement should have enjoyed an early adulthood full of achievement. Yet...
The History of Democracy in DR Congo
The people of the Democratic Republic of the Congo went to the polls in July 2006 to elect a president and 500 members of the national assembly, the lower house of parliament. (The senate is to be elected indirectly by the provincial assemblies in...
Water Wars in India
Water has already become blue oil--commodified, dwindling, yet overused and abused. From a renewable resource it is being converted into a non-renewable resource like fossil fuels. From a community resource it is being turned into a privatised commodity...
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