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Keywords:

  • biotechnology;
  • GM crops;
  • India;
  • South Africa;
  • Brazil;
  • mobilization

This paper explores the national and transnational character of mobilization against GM crops in India, South Africa and Brazil in the ten-year period to 2005. By examining the contexts and practices of mobilization across the three countries, and in particular the complex, often fraught, local and global connections, the paper examines the diverse mobilizations that have occurred. The paper argues that to understand these processes, particular national political and economic contexts must be appreciated, alongside how the GM debates articulate with other foci for activism and the complex and often fragile nature of alliances that make up activist networks. The paper shows how the debate about GM crops has become a much wider one: about the future of agriculture and small-scale farmers, about corporate control and property rights and about the rules of global trade. In sum, a debate not just about the pros and cons of a particular set of technologies, but about politics and values and the future of agrarian society.