Three Famines: Starvation and Politics

Three Famines: Starvation and Politics

by Thomas Keneally
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Three Famines: Starvation and Politics 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
NorthmanSM More than 1 year ago
An excellent book describing the three tragic famine events and how they came to be. This book details the causation and environment that lead to these disasters and the political turmoil that accompanied them. Through drought, war, policies, and political millions of deaths are explained in a way that affords you the opportunity to see how it happened and how it could happen again.
narod More than 1 year ago
Anglophiles will not like this book. It highlights a direct connection between the British Empire and these three famines. It is true that the British were not directly involved in the horrors of the Mengistu era famines in Kenya, but it was the British who introduced maize as a staple crop there, blunting the ability of the Kenyan's traditional agriculture to mitigate the worst effects. The famines in Ireland and Bengal occurred under colonial governments established by the British. It was a combination of a Protestant/free market philosophy that equated charity with laziness and their perception of colonial peoples as uncivilized and lazy ( "Trevelyan believed the Irish too indolent to farm like civilized people..." p.67)that allowed British officials to discount the realities the subject peoples faced. In Bengal there was a military threat from the Japanese, but government inaction went far beyond the end of the military crisis. It is a good book to begin an exploration of the political aspects of famine with. From here you could more easily grasp something like "The Great Hunger: Ireland 1845-1849" by Cecil Woodham-Smith.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago