Asking the Earth

Asking the Earth
The Spread of Unsustainable Development
Winin Pereira & Jeremy Seabrook
© Winin Pereira & Jeremy Seabrook

First published in 1990 by:
Earthscan Publications Ltd.
3 Endsleigh Street, London,

First Indian edition 1992
Published by:
The Other India Press,
Mapusa 403 507 Goa.

Rs. 110 + Postage
US $10 + Postage

Now available to download:

All over the planet, development has become a dirty word rapidly losing its legitimacy. Its unearthly and uncaring drive to undermine the earth and its ecosystem has brought vociferous resistance and pretests from sane thinking people everywhere.

Was development always so destructive? At what point did it get transformed and become unsustainable? Are some economies more unsustainable than others? Is ‘sustainable development’ nothing more than just a benign label for conducting present day business as usual?

In this celebrated book, now into its third edition, Winin Pereira and Jeremy Seabrook go back in time to exhume the deadly origin of the unsustainable economics of the West and of the deadly megamachine called development.

They argue that most of what they startlingly call the “Two-Thirds World” had sustainable systems in place until the arrival of colonialism. Colonialism enabled Europe which was already destroying its own natural capital to continue to nurture its unsustainable system at the expense of other societies and their livelihoods. As development today merely advances the trends established by colonialism, it must inevitably continue to further the process of despoliation and misery.

As a contrast to unsustainable development, Pereira and Seabrook celebrate in detail the sustainable life-style of the warlis, a tribal community living fairly close to the metropolis of Mumbai (Bombay) and which Pereira has maintained a long and intense relationship. It is to such communities, write Pereira and Seabrook, that we must urgently turn if we wish to retrieve sustainable practice for the continuing life of the planet and for future generation.

Winin Pereira was one of India’s most distinguished development critics. He is also the author of the Tending the Earth and Global Parasites.

Jeremy Seabrook is an extremely versatile and perspective development writer based in London but more often seen and encountered in the Two Thirds World which he loves more intensely than his own.

The Other Side of History
Sustainable Lifestyle of the Warlis
Red Ink in the “Blueprint for a Green Economy”
Technological Intervention
Interconnections of Violence
Sa Vidya Ya Vimuktaye
The Bhagat and the Doctor
Natural Versus Formal Forestry
Celebrating Trees, Celebrating Life
Restoring Our Future


One response to “Asking the Earth

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