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BEFORE YOU WATCH: Green Revolution

Use the “Three Close Reads” approach as you watch the video below (next in the lineup!). If you want to learn more about this strategy, click here.

First read: preview and skimming for gist

Before you watch, you should skim the transcript first. The skim should be very quick and give you the gist (general idea) of what the video is about. You should be looking at the title, thumbnails, pictures, and first few seconds of the video for the gist.

Second read: key ideas and understanding content

Now that you’ve skimmed the video transcript and taken a quick peek at the video, you should preview the questions you will be answering. These questions will help you get a better understanding of the concepts and arguments that are presented in the video. Keep in mind that when you watch the video, it is a good idea to write down any vocab you read or hear that is unfamiliar to you.
By the end of the second close read, you should be able to answer the following questions:
  1. Why did the US State Department official William Gaud coin the term “Green Revolution” in 1968, and what was he contrasting it to?
  2. Eman M. Elshaikh refers to a common saying in the US State Department in the Cold War: “Where hunger goes, communism follows.” What does this mean, and how did this concern help launch the Green Revolution?
  3. How did the Green Revolution differ in different regions in its adaptation and its results?
  4. What were some of the methods and results of the Green Revolution?
  5. What are some of the critiques of the Green Revolution?

Third read: evaluating and corroborating

Finally, here are some questions that will help you focus on why this video matters and how it connects to other content you’ve studied.
At the end of the third read, you should be able to respond to these questions:
  1. How was the Green Revolution political? How do you think food can be political? Can you connect the policies and impacts of the Green Revolution to the frame narrative of production and distribution? Is there any way for this kind of food aid and technology transfer to not be political?
  2. There is still ongoing debate about the policies and the legacy of the Green Revolution, and some new policies and technologies have continued to emerge in ways that are similar to the Green Revolution. Based on the video and your understanding of geopolitics in the Cold War and today, how do you think we can best measure whether it was a success?
Now that you know what to look for, it’s time to watch! Remember to return to these questions once you’ve finished watching.

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