Date of Award


Document Type



Environmental Studies

Thesis Advisor

Andrea Feldpausch-Parker


Soil is often treated as a singular biological entity rather than a holistic environment that holds interconnectedness to the social interactions that arise from the treatment, privatization, and loss of the soil. This study serves to expose the holistic nature of soil through analysis of the social externalities that arise from farming techniques which narrowly focus on the biological functioning of soil. Analysis of how these interactions are impacted, approached, and permitted in Vietnam and Morocco is presented through two techniques used globally to increase soil productivity-- chemical fertilizers and drip irrigation. Both techniques serve to the displace soil not only in a biological/physical sense, but in a political sense as well. The demand for these procedures comes from agricultural development, ultimately driven by neoliberalism to expand and privatize in the name of economic growth. Fertilizers and drip irrigation as inputs for agricultural production not only continuously contribute to climate change, but ultimately lead to unfair privatization and displacement of land, dispossessing people and tearing away at the social fabrics of the farming community in the name of 'efficiency' .

Included in

Agriculture Commons