famine


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famine

widespread food shortages leading to starvation and a high death rate within a given population. During a famine people die not only of hunger but from a variety of diseases to which they become increasingly vulnerable. Sen (1981) has argued that starvation arises from the condition of people not having enough to eat, and not as a result of there not being enough food to eat. Famine generally occurs when there is a sudden collapse of the level of food consumption, rather than as the result of a longterm decline, and people die because of the lack of time available to counteract the factors that lead to low consumption. It rarely occurs that a population is without any food (the Netherlands under German occupation during World War II may be one example), rather, Sen argues that it is changes in people's entitlement to food which is altered. Thus famine is linked to the distribution as well as the production of food, and the vulnerability of some groups, rather than others, within a population. Historically, famine has been precipitated by events such as serious floods or pestilence, but in the 20th-century major famines have been closely associated with warfare, as with Ethiopia and Mozambique in the 1970s and 80s, or with profound political upheavals, as with the consolidation of Stalinism in the 1930s in the USSR, and Maoism in China in the late 1950s. In all of these cases, however, only some social groups lost their entitlement to food, whilst others retained theirs or acquired new ones.
References in periodicals archive ?
He takes as his harrowing sample 58 major famines between 1870 and 2010 and, in a distressing number of cases, political beastliness carries much of the responsibility for tragedy.
There is concern that famine could exist in many parts of the RSS.
New publications have highlighted the complexities inherent in studying famine as a calamitous event with intersecting biological and social factors (e.
In February, South Sudan declared two counties in Unity State to be in famine.
The origins of such prejudice are briefly but suitably supported by reference to primary sources that underscore the racist attitudes of the British towards those defined as "other" to the Anglo-Saxon; and none more so than the Irish victims of Famine.
At the opening of a conference on the Famine in 1995, Irish president Mary Robinson spoke of this "event which more than any other shaped us as a people.
We now have the capacity to take measures to avoid famine.
The long list of major seventeenth-century famines ranges from Russia's Times of Troubles in 1600-03, through the cataclysmic combination of war, famine, and plague that devastated Ireland in mid-century, to France's, Finland's, Scotland's, and Estonia's biggest famines on record in the 1690s (Alfani and O Grada 2016).
Among those who responded with unstinted generosity were the Sultan of Turkey, Pope Pius IX, the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, "fallen women" in London, and many others, which provides clear support for the argument that the Irish famine was indeed the first global humanitarian crisis.
Kathrin Moeller used a case study of the city of Halle to showcase the potential of famine research for economic history.
Pauline Lomax, originally from Belfast, is bringing the event back after a six-year break along with former members of Wales Famine Forum.
THE Ukrainian community remembered a famine that killed millions of their people.