Special Section: Toxic dispossession and environmental violence in Latin America edited by Swistun, D., Lugo-Vivas, D. A. & Vélez-Torres, I.

"Soja = Glifosato + Paramilitares": Agro-extractivism and environmental violence in Paraguay

Author: Arturo Ezquerro-Cañete orcid logo (University of New Brunswick)

  • "Soja = Glifosato + Paramilitares":  Agro-extractivism and environmental violence in Paraguay

    Special Section: Toxic dispossession and environmental violence in Latin America edited by Swistun, D., Lugo-Vivas, D. A. & Vélez-Torres, I.

    "Soja = Glifosato + Paramilitares": Agro-extractivism and environmental violence in Paraguay

    Author:

Abstract

This article examines the different forms of structural, everyday, and symbolic violence brought about by the sweeping expansion of agribusiness in Paraguay over the past few decades. This discussion is framed around the protest slogan of the organized campesino movement: "Soja = Glifosato + Paramilitares" ["Soy = Glyphosate + Paramilitary"]. The banner encapsulates the twin forces of environmental violence and toxic dispossession faced by the peasant and Indigenous communities who live near soybean fields. On the one hand, the quotidian violence caused by agrochemical drifts – accumulation by fumigation – that leads to various forms of toxification, slow death and corporeal attrition that reduce populations through ill health, infertility, and furtive modes of displacement. On the other hand, the more open, direct, and deadly violence involving the assassination of peasant activists and local leaders along with the criminalization of social protests. The adamant and visceral dismissals by agribusiness elites of the grievances of campesinos represents another form of symbolic violence, highlighting the obstacles that rural communities and peasant social movements face in addressing toxic landscapes and environmental violence of the agro-extractivism. 

Keywords: environmental violence, accumulation by dispossession, Latin America, agrarian capitalism, agro-extractivism

How to Cite:

Ezquerro-Cañete, A., (2024) “"Soja = Glifosato + Paramilitares": Agro-extractivism and environmental violence in Paraguay”, Journal of Political Ecology 31(1), 257–271. doi: https://doi.org/10.2458/jpe.5400

Downloads:
Download PDF
View PDF

Funding

  • BMBF, Germany
  • CALAS Fellowship, University of Guadalajara

132 Views

180 Downloads

Published on
20 Apr 2024
Peer Reviewed