The recent occurrences of famine in Ethiopia and Southern Africa have propelled this key issue back into the public arena for the first time since 1984, as once again it becomes a priority -  not only for lesser developed countries but also for the international community.

Exploring the paradox that is the persistence of famine in the contemporary world, this book looks at the way the nature of famine is changing in the face of globalization and shifting geo-political forces.

The book challenges perceived wisdom about the causes of famine and analyzes the worst cases of recent years – including close analysis of food scarcity in North Korea, Ethiopia, Sudan and Malawi and less well known cases in Madagascar, Iraq and Bosnia. With fresh conceptual frameworks and analytical tools, major theoretical constructs which have previously been applied to analyze famines (such as the 'democracy ends famine' argument, Sen’s 'entitlement approach' and the 'complex political emergency' framework) are confronted.

This volume assembles an international team of contributors, including Marcus Noland, Alex de Waal and Dan Maxwell; an impressive roster which helps make this book an important resource for those in the fields of development studies and political economics.

chapter 1|26 pages


From ‘old famines’ to ‘new famines’
ByStephen Devereux

chapter 2|23 pages

Famine scales

Towards an instrumental definition of ‘famine’
ByPaul Howe, Stephen Devereux

chapter 3|16 pages

The criminalization of mass starvations

From natural disaster to crime against humanity 1
ByJenny Edkins

chapter 4|24 pages

Sen's entitlement approach

Critiques and counter-critiques
ByStephen Devereux

chapter 5|37 pages

AIDS, hunger and destitution

Theory and evidence for the ‘new variant famines’ hypothesis in Africa
ByAlex de Waal

chapter 7|35 pages

Malawi's first famine, 2001–2002

ByStephen Devereux, Zoltan Tiba

chapter 8|19 pages

An atypical urban famine

Antananarivo, Madagascar 1985–1986
ByMichel Garenne

chapter 9|25 pages

North Korea as a ‘new’ famine 1

ByMarcus Noland

chapter 10|23 pages

Why do famines persist in the Horn of Africa?

Ethiopia, 1999–2003
BySue Lautze, Daniel Maxwell

chapter 11|24 pages

Increased rural vulnerability in the era of globalization

Conflict and famine in Sudan during the 1990s
ByLuka Biong Deng

chapter 12|21 pages

Why are there no longer ‘war famines’ in contemporary Europe?

Bosnia besieged, 1992–1995
ByFiona Watson

chapter 13|22 pages

Is democracy the answer?

Famine prevention in two Indian states
ByDan Banik

chapter 14|24 pages

Can GM crops prevent famine in Africa?

ByIan Scoones

chapter 15|27 pages

Priority regimes and famine

ByPaul Howe