Vandana Shiva: Planting Seeds for Change

 

What was Prince Charles doing with some plump Indian woman in front of her little snack shop in Dilli Haat on October 30 2003? Is it because this “plump” woman holds a doctorate in physics? Is it because of the many books she has written about the world? Is it because of her television appearances, such as the one on Now with Bill Moyers? Is it that award she received, that Earth Day International Award from the United Nations?

I would like to think that she is desired and revered the world over because she is a mother. She is a mother in the literal and philosophical sense of the word. Her appearance at my old alma mater, UCSB, on Mother’s Day 2004 reveals just how far motherhood goes. It demonstrates yet again that science is not meant for white males in white coats in sterile white rooms. We often forget the science behind motherhood. A great mother is more than a cook: she is a nutritionist. A great mother is more than just a maid: she is an interior designer on the way to being an architect. A great mother is more than just a devoted consumer: her duty is to save the seed to help produce consumables.

According to Dr. Vandana Shiva, one of the greatest enemies to true motherhood is not some deadbeat dad but the privatization of life forms by international corporations via patents. Her In Motion Magazine interview reads, “Patents are a replay of colonization as it took place 500 years ago in a number of ways. Interestingly, even at that time, when Columbus set sail and other adventurers like him, they also set out with pieces of paper that were called the letters patent which gave the power to the adventurers to claim as property the territory they found anywhere in the world that was not ruled by white Christian princes… Contemporary patents on life seem to be of a similar quality. They are pieces of paper issued by patent offices of the world that basically are telling corporations that if there's knowledge or living material, plants, seeds, medicines which the white man has not known about before, claim it on our behalf, and make profits out of it.”

Well, at least one white Christian prince paid a visit to his spiritual mother for something other than exploitation. Perhaps Prince Charles would apologize on behalf of his class and recognize that the white princes of the future are virtual people incorporated into massive international conglomerates.

Credits

Words and Flow by
Vandana Shiva

Introduction by
Kum Kum Bhavnani

Sound Recording by
Richard Ingrami

Sound Production by
L.A. Sound Posse

 Interface Design and Programming by
Bryan Wilhite