Bikrum Singh Gill
Department of Political Science
517 Major Williams Hall
220 Stanger Street
Blacksburg, VA 24061
Dr. Gill is currently working on a book manuscript titled “Race, Nature, and Accumulation: A Decolonial Political Ecological Analysis of Land Grabbing.” This book examines the motives and consequences of the post financial crisis phenomenon of large-scale agricultural land grabbing, with a particular focus on the “South-South” case of Indian agricultural companies expanding into the Gambella province of Ethiopia. Combining political ecology, political economy, and decolonial theory, this work situates the land grab within the longue duree of colonial-capitalist modernity, and advances the argument that the land grab, as a distinctive post-crisis phenomenon, signifies an attempt to re-constitute the racialized social-ecology of global capitalist development.
Dr. Gill’s subsequent work will build off from some of the larger implications of the book project, and will seek to intervene in particular into the emergent “epoch” debates which are centered upon locating the social-ecological crisis of climate change within a distinctive geological epoch defined by the rise of the human as geological agent. Specifically, he is concerned with the Eurocentric premise of the major approaches, whether identified as Anthropocene or Capitalocene, as they are all united in granting historical priority to the generative agency of the European human. His approach aims to extend the debate beyond such Eurocentrism, by foregrounding instead how the structuring relations defining the epoch of the climate crisis are born out of the European settler/master’s racialized response to the social-ecological world-making knowledge and agency of non-European peoples. This project thus engages a deeper global history and broader geography of social-ecological co-constitution in order to emphasize first how non-Europeans have been involved in landscape formation for millennia prior to the colonial-capitalist era, and, second, how such knowledge and practice have been both appropriated and erased by colonizing forces.
- Global Political Economy
- Political Ecology
- Decolonial Theory
- Critical Race Theory
- PhD, York University
- MA, York University
- BA, University of Victoria
- Honorable Mention, 2016 Ashby Prize for most innovative paper in the journal Environment and Planning 'A'
- York University Dissertation Award Nomination (2016-2017)
Gill, Bikrum. ‘A Decolonial World-Ecological Analysis of the Land Grab: Gambella, the River, and the fall of Karuturi’ In Recentering Africa in International Relations: Beyond Lack, Peripherality, and Failure, edited by Zubairu Wai and Marta Iñiguez de Heredia. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2018.
Gill, Bikrum. ‘Can the river speak? Epistemological confrontation in the rise and fall of the land grab in Gambella, Ethiopia,’Environment and Planning A, 48(4), 2016: 699–717
- Co-investigator, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Partnership Development Grant (2019-2022) Project title: Four Stories about Food Sovereignty Link: https://www.fourstoriesaboutfood.org/
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