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 Featured Title
Resistance Is Fertile
Canadian Struggles on the BioCommons
Wilhelm Peekhaus  

$95.00 Hardcover
Release Date: 4/1/2013
ISBN: 9780774823104    

$32.95 Paperback
Release Date: 1/1/2014
ISBN: 9780774823111    

312 Pages


About the Book

For decades, government, industry, and the mainstream media have extolled the virtues of biotechnology. Their dominant message -- that biotechnology can improve everything from our health and diet to our environment and economy -- is unmistakably celebratory. We hear about biotechnology’s power to reverse environmental degradation, help medical researchers identify disease genes, and increase industrial efficiency, output, and jobs. Government and industry rarely tell us about biotechnology's negative side effects. Not only are genetically engineered crops still failing to deliver consistently higher yields; there is also mounting evidence that genetically engineered organisms come with a host of safety and environmental risks.

Focusing on agriculture, Resistance Is Fertile challenges the dominant rhetoric surrounding biotechnology by offering a critical analysis of the role of capital and the state in the development of this technoscience. In particular, Wilhelm Peekhaus analyzes the major issues around which opponents of agricultural biotechnology in Canada are mobilizing -- namely, the enclosure of the biological commons and the knowledge commons, which together form the BioCommons. What emerges is an empirically and theoretically informed analysis of topics such as Canada’s regulatory regime, the corporate control of seeds, the intellectual property system, and attempts to construct and control public discussions about agricultural biotechnology.

About the Author(s)

Wilhelm Peekhaus is an assistant professor at the School of Information Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Table of Contents


1 Canadian Biotechnology Policy and Its Critics

2 Enclosure and Resistance on the BioCommons

3 Battles to Reclaim and Maintain the BioCommons

4 Intellectual Property Rights: Facilitating Capital’s Command over

5 Regulatory Capture and Its Critics

6 Capture and Control of Biotechnology Discourse in Canada




"Resistance Is Fertile is an outstanding contribution to the field of biotechnology. Wilhelm Peekhaus weaves the empirical content brilliantly into an enlightening discussion of both political economy and social resistance."
-- Rodney Loeppky, Department of Political Science, York University

Sample Chapter

Sample Chapter [PDF]

Related Topics

Environmental Studies

Other Ways To Order

In Canada, order your copy of Resistance Is Fertile from UTP Distribution at:

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M3H 5T8

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Fax orders: 1(800)221-9985 or (416)667-7832

Ordering information for customers outside Canada

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