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Freedom FarmersAgricultural Resistance and the Black Freedom Movement$
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Monica M. White

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781469643694

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469643694.001.0001

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Drawing on the Past toward a Food Sovereign Future

Drawing on the Past toward a Food Sovereign Future

The Detroit Black Community Food Security Network

(p.117) 5 Drawing on the Past toward a Food Sovereign Future
Freedom Farmers

Monica M. White

University of North Carolina Press

Whereas previous chapters discussed strategies employed by those who stayed in the South, this chapter tells the stories of the descendants of those who migrated north, focusing on Detroit. While far in time and space from the other examples of Black agricultural resistance discussed in this book, contemporary communities in Detroit are similarly turning to agriculture as a strategy of survival and resistance. The Detroit Black Community Food Security Network (DBCFSN) formed in 2006, setting goals of improving education, food access, and collective buying. DBCFSN is rooted in a pan-African philosophy of pride and solidarity and draws from founders’ experiences in Detroit’s Black Power era and in city government. Central to DBCFSN’s approach to community food sovereignty are antiracist and anticapitalist principles that guide cooperative efforts, political education, and organizing designed to dismantle systems of white supremacy embedded in the food system. DBCFSN’s most well-known projects – the Detroit Food Policy Council, D-Town Farm, and the Ujamaa Food Buying Club – enact the strategies of prefigurative politics, economic autonomy, and commons as praxis to build collective agency and community resilience.

Keywords:   Black farmers, Detroit, Detroit Black Community Food Security Network, D-Town Farm, food policy councils, food justice, food security, urban agriculture

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