'Tom Lines combines a lifelong commitment to development with a thorough knowledge of the complexities of global markets. Cutting expertly through economic jargon and myth, he explains why markets, far from being neutral, reflect the power and politics of those who govern them, determining who wins and who loses from globalization. You don't have to agree with every detail of his analysis to learn from this salutary reminder that the current boom in commodity prices is not the end of a history of commodity dependence which has left deep scars on the developing world.'
Duncan Green, Oxfam
'Thomas Lines explains with science and erudite, committed scholarship why it is necessary to understand the History of Poverty in order to make poverty history. Historically embedded structures of production and international trade make peasant farmers of the South hostage to a value chain from which they pick up crumbs, whilst traders and financiers accumulate wealth. The answer is not to find a place in the existing value chain, but to break it. This book must form part of an obligatory learning discipline by all who care to make poverty history.'
Yash Tandon, South Centre
'A timely, clearly-written book that shows how and why commodity markets fail, how they undermine food security and how poverty is made not fated. Lines unpicks the public policies, private standards and buyer power that impoverish but also discusses solutions; from prioritising food security not foreign trade, development of domestic and regional markets, reform of commodity markets and development of global competition policy to tackle the concentration of corporate power.'
Geoff Tansey, author of The Food System and The Future Control of Food
'This book shines a spotlight exactly where it is needed -- on the 900 million poor people in rural areas in the world. Rather than being "assigned to the economic scrap heap" by the way global markets are currently organised, this book shows how radically changed policies can both help these people out of poverty and can provide the engine for true sustainable and just development.’
Stewart Wallis, The New Economics Foundation
‘A most persuasive book.'
Will Podmore, The Tribune
'A book packed with clear arguments alongside tables and statistics showing how global economic policies have created poverty on the most local levels.'