When it comes to seed selection, a million heads are better than one. The process of farmer plant improvement is general right across the rice-growing region in West Africa, and keeping planting material in play through constant use and selection allows for a myriad of adaptation decisions.
Paul Richards, an anthropological commentator and researcher specializing in agricultural technology and African farming systems, is emeritus professor of technology and agrarian development at Wageningen University in the Netherlands. Formerly a professor at University College London in the department of anthropology, he spent 2014 teaching at Njala University in Sierra Leone, where he was worked for more than 30 years conducting ethnographic studies and the anthropological analysis of armed conflict.
Posts by Paul Richards
The real Elvis is American, remember, and America is a consumer society. The desires we project, the stuff we buy—that is what feels real to us. It lets us have any Elvis we want. He left plenty of kitsch in his wake, plenty of pseudo-religion, plenty of Elvis jokes—but he was not, is not, a joke. He lived our contradictions, released our inhibitions, and lost himself in the process.