The Revolution Will Not Be Microwaved (Notes)

Chapter 3 — Holding Our Ground: Land and Labor Struggles

Urban Food Production and Cultural Change

  • “Though my developing interest in plants back then led me out of the city and into the woods, these weeds are potent symbols of the unstoppability of green power, of natural processes, even in a densely populated, concrete-covered megalopolis.”
  • Question of soil contamination when growing food in cities – emerging field of bioremediation
    • “Bioremediation employs certain plants, fungi, and bacteria to draw heavy metals and other toxins out of the soil and into their tissue or to digest them into harmless forms.”
  • Example of effective food production in cities: “victory garden” movements of World War I and II and the relief gardens of the Depression era
  • Successful urban gardens connect with existing neighborhood social networks and institutions
  • Schools tend to have land they can allocate to gardening or connections to nearby land

“For urban dwellers, producing any type food is a departure from the norm, creating powerful connections with the biological sources of food. There is no shortage of creative ideas for encouraging food production in and around cities. It’s making those ideas happen that is the hard work. The image of bees as invisible but indispensable pollinators has inspired many activists in their work, plugging away at small projects, no one of which will change the world, but which collectively create fertility, and the fruits of today’s activism are – we hope – the seeds of a better tomorrow.”


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