The Right to Land and Territory: New Human Right and Collective Action Frame

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


    Resistance against the appropriation of nature, especially land, has been one of the key struggles of the transnational agrarian movement La Via Campesina (LVC) since its inception in 1993. The issue of access to land has become even more central after the food crisis of 2007-08, in a context increasingly marked by land grabbing and climate change. This contribution offers a critical examination of the emergence of the « right to land and territory », both as a collective action frame deployed by transnational peasant movements, and as a new human right in international law. It explores the various ways in which agrarian movements are using the human rights framework to question the establishment of absolute private property rights over land, and restore political limits on access to land. It argues that peasant movements are claiming a new human right to land through a combination of institutional and extra-institutional channels, in an effort not only to achieve increased protection of peasants’ land rights (against and by the state), but also to advance an alternative conception of human rights that resonates with their worldviews, and allows for the development of food sovereignty alternatives, including outside the state.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProperty Rights from Below: Commodification of Land and the Counter-Movement
    EditorsOlivier de Schutter, Balakrishnan Rajagopal
    Number of pages25
    ISBN (Print)978-1138657243
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2020


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