The interconnections of natural resources, empire and labour run through the most central and conflict-ridden crises of our times: war, environmental degradation, impoverishment and plutocracy. Crucial to understanding and to changing the conditions that give rise to these crises is the critical study of resource development and, more broadly, the resources question, which is the subject of Resources, Empire and Labour.
Intended for researchers, students and activists, the chapters in Resources, Empire and Labour illuminate key aspects of the resources question from a variety of angles through concrete analyses and histories focused on the extractive industries (mining, oil, gas). The chapters examine such issues as resource-dependency at the international, country and regional levels; the neglected role of metropolitanization; environmental impacts and limits; the colonial basis of and imperial patterns in today's globalized resource exploitation system; lessons of Indigenous and working-class resistance to corporate resource extraction; the importance of democratic control and public ownership; and new avenues in shifting the debate on resources and hinterlands.
Introduction (David Leadbeater)
Part 1: The Experience of Mining-Dependent Economic Development
Part 2: Environmental Limits, Technology and Environmental Counter-Revolution
Part 3: Indigenous Sovereignty, Resources and Corporate Power
Part 4: Patterns of Empire
Part 5: Working Class History Lessons
Part 6: Public Resource Ownership, Rents and Distribution
Part 7: Shifting the Debate on Resources and Hinterlands
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David Leadbeater is an associate professor of economics at Laurentian University.