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Title: The invention of nature : human and environmental futures in a biotechnological age
Author: Street, Paul Kevan
ISNI:       0000 0001 3488 2572
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2001
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This thesis considers the potential consequences for social and biological diversity, arising from the introduction of genetically modified crops in developing countries. It argues that the production of agricultural biodiversity is an ongoing social process, involving countless temporally and spatially located works in progress. These localised applications of knowledge about diversity, find their expression in performances which do not simply unfold in time and space but construct them, (re)producing and structuring, territorialising and stratifying. The thesis argues that the social, is a heterogeneous amalgam of unknowably complex relationships; suggesting also that the introduction of GM technologies involves simultaneous processes of de-territorialisation and re-territorialisation, substituting a heterotopian reality for the premise of a utopian fantasy - a singular, genetically deterministic world, which denies its own partiality. The thesis examines how, the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Biosafety Protocol, the TRIPs agreement and other WTO agreements, extend particular ordering stories through time and space, arguing that the deployment of biotechnologies can only succeed through the enrolment of humans and non­humans into these polymorphic networks. It argues that the mechanisms and ordering narratives of the CBD and TRIPs conflict with the socio-cultural practices that produce biodiversity; suggesting, that IPRs provide a means for disciplining farmers, while maintaining the materiality of GM seeds through time- space. These technologies cannot be deployed without corresponding bodies of knowledge; they are, assemblages, active presences, permitting the exercise of power through the embodiment of particular “modes of ordering.” Finally, the thesis argues that the development of community intellectual rights, and traditional resource rights offer little hope for either maintaining the social practices necessary for the maintenance of agricultural biodiversity, or for increasing the substantial freedoms of communities in the two thirds world, without the recognition of the heterogeneous nature of social existence and the regeneration of people’s spaces.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Economic and Social Research Council ; University of Warwick
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: KN Common Law, Private Law ; SB Plant culture