Late Victorian Holocausts: El Niņo Famines and the Making of the Third World

Front Cover
Verso, Jan 1, 2001 - History - 464 pages
51 Reviews
Examining a series of El Nino-induced droughts and the famines that they spawned around the globe in the last third of the 19th century, Mike Davis discloses the intimate, baleful relationship between imperial arrogance and natural incident that combined to produce some of the worst tragedies in human history. Late Victorian Holocausts focuses on three zones of drought and subsequent famine: India, Northern China; and Northeastern Brazil. All were affected by the same global climatic factors that caused massive crop failures, and all experienced brutal famines that decimated local populations. But the effects of drought were magnified in each case because of singularly destructive policies promulgated by different ruling elites. Davis argues that the seeds of underdevelopment in what later became known as the Third World were sown in this era of High Imperialism, as the price for capitalist modernization was paid in the currency of millions of peasants' lives.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
19
4 stars
17
3 stars
11
2 stars
3
1 star
1

Review: Late Victorian Holocausts: El Niņo Famines and the Making of the Third World

User Review  - Peter Van - Goodreads

Two stars and those only because the subject matter is important. Amazingly, many people seem to be unaware of the dark sides of imperialist capitalism in the 19th century and view this book as an eye ... Read full review

Review: Late Victorian Holocausts: El Niņo Famines and the Making of the Third World

User Review  - Elizabeth - Goodreads

Eye-opening account of the occurrence of these famines and the different factors that were involved (imperialism, particularly severe El Nino systems, introduction to global economy and bailing out ... Read full review

All 24 reviews »

Selected pages

Contents

Preface
1
A Note on Definitions
17
The Great Drought 18761878
23
Victorias Ghosts
25
The Poor Eat Their Homes
61
Gunboats and Messiahs
91
El Nino and the New Imperialism 18881902
117
The Government of Hell
119
The Mystery of the Monsoons
213
Climates of Hunger
239
The Political Ecology of Famine
277
The Origins of the Third World
279
India The Modernization of Poverty
311
China Mandates Revoked
341
Brazil Race and Capital in the Nordeste
377
Glossary
395

Skeletons at the Feast
141
Millenarian Revolutions
177
Decyphering ENSO
211
Notes
399
Index
459
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (2001)

Mike Davis is the author of several books including Planet of Slums, City of Quartz, Ecology of Fear, Late Victorian Holocausts, and Magical Urbanism. He was recently awarded a MacArthur Fellowship. He lives in Papa'aloa, Hawaii.

Bibliographic information