| Economist, writer|
| British, American, Non-resident Indian and Person of Indian Origin|
The Value of Nothing
Stuffed and Starved
Stuffed and Starved, The Value of Nothing
Cornell University (2002)
Martin Tielli, T Bone Burnett, John Paul White, Joy Williams
Raj Patel Wikipedia
Raj Patel (born 1972) is a British Indian academic, journalist, activist and writer who has lived and worked in Zimbabwe, South Africa and the United States for extended periods. He is best known for his 2008 book, Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System. His most recent book is The Value of Nothing which was on The New York Times best-seller list during February 2010. He has been referred to as "the rock star of social justice writing."
Born to a mother from Kenya and a father from Fiji, he grew up in Golders Green in north-west London where his family ran a corner shop. Patel received a BA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE), from Oxford, and a master's degree from the London School of Economics, and gained his PhD in Development Sociology from Cornell University in 2002. He has been a visiting scholar at Yale, the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Texas at Austin. As part of his academic training, Patel worked at the World Bank, World Trade Organization and the United Nations. He has since become an outspoken public critic of all of these organisations, and claims to have been tear-gassed on four continents protesting against his former employers.
Patel was one of many organizers in the 1999 protests in downtown Seattle, WA, and has organised in support of food sovereignty. More recently he has lived and worked extensively in Zimbabwe and in South Africa. He was refused a visa extension by the Mugabe regime for his political involvement with the pro-democracy movement. He is associated through his work on food with the Via Campesina movement, and through his work on urban poverty and resistance with Abahlali baseMjondolo and the Landless Peoples Movement. He has written a number of criticisms of various aspects of the policies and research methods of the World Bank and was a co-editor, with Christopher Brooke, of the online leftist webzine The Voice of the Turtle.
In 2007 he was invited to give the keynote address at the University of Abahlali baseMjondolo graduation ceremony. He administers the organisation's website. In 2008 he was asked to testify on the global food crisis before the House Financial Services Committee in the USA. In 2009 he joined the advisory board of Corporate Accountability International's Value the Meal campaign.
Patel became a US citizen on 7 January 2010.
In January 2010 some adherents of Share International, following an announcement by Benjamin Creme, concluded that Patel could be the Maitreya. Patel denied being the Maitreya.
In 2012, he appeared in the National Film Board of Canada documentary Payback, based on Margaret Atwood's Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth, which premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. He appears in the documentary film A Place at the Table which opened in the US on 1 March 2013.
Patel is a Libertarian Socialist and has described himself as "someone who has very strong anarchist sympathies." In his book The Value of Nothing he praised the grassroots participatory democracy practised in the Zapatista Councils of Good Government in southern Mexico and has advocated similar decentralist models of economic democracy and confederal administration as templates to go by for social justice movements in the global north. He has also described himself as "not a communist ... just open minded", and in an interview with The New Yorker's Lauren Collins as an atheist Hindu.
The question is: why are there markets of food at all? – speaking about the global food economy at Marquette UniversityStuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System, by Raj Patel (2008)
Food Rebellions! Crisis and the Hunger for Justice, Eric Holt Giménez, Raj Patel (2009)
Food Rebellions!: Forging Food Sovereignty to Solve the Global Food Crisis, Raj Patel (2009)
The Value of Nothing, by Raj Patel (2010)
Forward to No Land! No House! No Vote! Voices from Symphony Way, by the Symphony Way Pavement Dwellers (2011)