MARISA WILSON, UNIVERSITY OF WEST INDIES, TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO
Abstract: Economic ideas of social capital often narrow the social domain to transactions based on individualised motivations (i.e., profit) leaving out more social possibilities which may or may not involve maximising personal consumption (i.e., fights for ‘social justice,’ nationalism). This narrowing of vision has real-life consequences, implicated not only in dominant economic theory, but also in socio-economic policies for ‘development.’ In order to tackle challenges to local and regional food security in the Caribbean, we must open policy-making to more encompassing (Dumont, 1966) motivations for economic behaviour linked to the creation of social identities within and between people. As a step towards this end, the author incorporates Sen’s concept of commitment and related theories of identity formation into analyses of food production in the Caribbean, and Cuba in particular.
Keywords: social capital; development; food security; Caribbean; commitment; Cuba.