1st Edition

Family Agriculture Tradition and Transformation

By David G. Francis Copyright 1994

    Originally published in 1994, this book examines the importance of family agricultural systems in both the developed and the developing worlds. Throughout the world, and throughout history, the family unit has been at the heart of agricultural systems. Working together, families not only furnish their own needs, but form the basis for society itself: they provide the labour, population, resources and the market to maintain much of the world’s economic and social development. But the global race for financial prosperity, with its large-scale intensive farming techniques, is increasingly undermining the family’s role in food production and social cohesion. This book explores both traditional and modern farming techniques and looks at their different consequences for national agricultural resources and for rural societies. Finally, it suggests ways in which technology can be harnessed to meet the needs of the family rather than undermine it, in order to achieve a viable and sustainable agriculture for the future.



    David Francis studied Agricultural Education and Social Sciences at the Ohio State University and became interested in international projects. He has worked in Liberia and Togo, West Africa, and in Jamaica, Panamá, Colombia and Haiti. He holds a PhD in Development Sociology from Cornell University and has been a professor in the Brazilian Federal System since 1976. In 2010, David received the title of 'Pesquisador Sênior' (Senior Researcher) from the Brazilian Conselho Nacional Desenvolvimento Cientíico e Tecnológico, CNPq.

    ‘I wholeheartedly recommend Family Agriculture to all who are looking for a more complete understanding of world agricultural production, and how both producers and consumers have been and will be affected by the way in which we produce our food. I am sure that it will generate broad interest and promote thought on our common future.’ Clive Edwards, Former Director of the Sustainable Agriculture Program, Ohio State University, USA.