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  • How colonialist depictions of Palestinians feed western ideas of eastern ‘barbarism’ Elizabeth Vibert, University of Victoria Like so many other Palestinians, my friend Abeer Salah (not her real name) lives in exile. For Salah, home is Baqa’a refugee camp 20 kilometres north of Jordan’s capital of Amman. But she has family and friends trapped in Gaza. Since the horrific Hamas attacks of Oct. 7 and Israel’s catastrophic military action in Gaza, she has been watching the

  • Palestine was never a ‘land without a people’ Ateqah Khaki, The Conversation and Vinita Srivastava, The Conversation Modern settlers to Palestine viewed the desert as something they needed to “make bloom.” But it already was, thanks to the long history of Palestinian agricultural systems. As violence continues to erupt in Gaza, and more than 200 hostages taken by Hamas on Oct. 7 remain missing, many of us are seeking to better understand the context of the

  • Aisha Azzam examines harvested wheat near Baqa’a refugee camp, Jordan. Credit: Guochen Wang The Four Stories project's documentary about Palestinian miller Aisha Azzam has been featured in a recent article by Philip Cox. Check out the short excerpt below, and be sure to read the the full article at! "It's a late spring day in the Baqa'a refugee camp, home to some 105,000 Palestinians who were born into the overcrowded Jordanian district or settled

  • Four Stories researcher Natalia Giraldo Osorio has successfully completed her research on rural Colombian food systems at the Universidad de Antioquia, and her findings are now available. We thank Natalia for her fantastic contributions to Food Sovereignty research, and encourage everyone interested in rural food systems to check out her work! You can also find a slideshow Natalia made at Title: El territorio visto como una colcha de retazos: Transiciones de la Ruralidad y

  • Hleketani farmers attend a meeting of their grocery savings club. (Elizabeth Vibert), Author provided Elizabeth Vibert, University of Victoria Stark warnings of a looming global food crisis spark fear as millions of people will likely descend into hunger in the coming months. As the New York Times put it, for the global food supply “there are few worse countries to be in conflict than Russia and Ukraine.” Nearly 50 nations, many low-income and numerous in

  • Natalia Giraldo Osorio, a Four Stories partner at the Universidad de Antioquia in Colombia, has created this slideshow of life in the rural village of El Carmen de Viboral. Translations into English have been provided by Four Stories researcher Fernanda Pacheco. From herb gardens and carrot harvests to scenes of local kitchens and chiva buses, these images provide a glimpse into rural life in north-western Colombia. Natalia adds: "I have been accompanying the project Four

  • *Cross-posted from Elizabeth Vibert's blog at The early view that the continent of Africa had been “spared,” relative to the Global North, in the coronavirus pandemic appears to be debunked by emerging data. While known infection rates and death rates are lower, many countries – including South Africa – have entered a third wave, and with global inequities in vaccine access deeply entrenched, ongoing impacts are likely to be felt for a long time

  • Four Stories community partner from Jordan, Fatima Obeidat, stars in two new videos. She is founder of Kananah Women’s Organization, which assists Syrian refugee women and low-income Jordanian women to develop food-based livelihoods. In the first video Fatima talks about za'atar that her organization prepares for export to the US. Za’atar is the name for both an herb (Origanicum syriacum, related to thyme) and an archetypal Palestinian spice blend, which combines the herb with sesame

  • A film telling the inspiring story of South African women seeking food justice This is a film about resilience – three generations of older women in a village in South Africa who came together in the dying days of apartheid to create a community garden. In the midst of severe drought and political turmoil, older women with limited access to land and little political voice joined together, beyond the household, beyond their kin, to make

  • As part of a lecture series on Decolonizing Settler Societies, Dr. Vibert gives a presentation on the history of apartheid and dispossession in Jopi Village, South Africa and the lasting legacies from that history. *This lecture was originally presented to an undergraduate seminar class in the History Department at the University of Victoria

  • The following article brings some good news from La Guajira, where a participatory-research project has resulted in a thriving community garden. Currently, they have crops of watermelon, squash, corn, beans, melon and yucca. The rainwater has also made possible the significant increase of goats and goats, and the care of the cows recently incorporated. This production directly benefits 45 families from the Taiguaicat, Pañarrer and Limunaka communities of the Manaure reservation, in which 206 people

  • The Crop Captain "And here I am asking Juya - Father of the Rain, to visit these lands soon, because the livelihood and economy of hundreds of families throughout the La Guajira peninsula depend on the rain and much more in this confinement due to the pandemic." Photographic rights of: Belkis Fontalvo Ramírez By Covid 19 Hunger and thirst get worse in Wayuu territory "With the closure of all commercial activities by governments

  • South Africa’s already extreme inequality, along racialised axes of income, wealth, and opportunity, has been exacerbated by the global pandemic. The vulnerability of many people’s livelihoods, and the food insecurity that is a key marker of that vulnerability, have been brought into sharp relief. As Tessa Dooms of Global Governance Futures observes, South Africa’s five-stage lockdown was delivered in ways suited to “middle-class suburbia.” Measures appropriate in well-resourced communities are neither feasible nor humane in

  • A fantastic virtual museum dedicated to food and climate issues in La Guajira has been created by Dejusticia, a Colombia-based research and advocacy organization. The museum displays a series of beautiful artwork which, in their own words, "shows one of our crudest realities: the constant violation of the fundamental rights of the largest indigenous people in Colombia and Venezuela." Visit the museum at and explore the gallery! The virtual tour culminates in Dejustica's five

  • The following fieldnotes and photographs have been prepared by a research assistant on the Four Stories project. They outline some of the challenges faced by Wayuu communities today. La Guajira, Colombia Notes and Photographs from the Field, January 2020 Prepared by Natalia Giraldo Osario Rancheria (Settlement) St. Martin du Puloy This community is made up of approximately ten families of Wayuu Indigenous people, who go through the seasons there. Families have major problems with access

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