Culture and land are intrinsically tied…

The land has for centuries dictated our traditions and customs. In our ever-modernizing society this has become less and less clear as the majority of the US population’s lives barely touch the land. But all of our lives are touched by land culture in the food that we eat and with many traditions that are celebrated still today in the New Mexico bioregion such as Cambalache, or harvest time trade fairs.

“The Shift of Land” consists of a 13 part radio series and a public meeting with a panel of scholars, farmers and ranchers from the area around the topic of land use in New Mexico. We will explore the changing culture of agriculture from the traditional forms to the more globalized model—which other states and countries have had to adopt in order to remain competitive.

Through voices of scholars, ranchers and farmers from the New Mexican bio-region we will explore the connection that culture has to the land and agriculture by exploring the different traditions, customs and foods that make the state unique. We will then look at the direction that farming and ranching worldwide have been pressured into—from the genetically engineered crops that bear non-reproducible fruit creating a dependence on mega seed companies such as Monsanto (squashing any seed saving tradition that communities once had) to the shift in land use from agriculture to development, which is creating a shift in society and culture from self-sufficiency to dependence on outside entities. Returning to New Mexico, scholars and people within traditional agriculture will explain the pressures that the state faces and what this means for agriculture and culture.

The program will be made available free of charge to community, public and low-powered and even commercial radio stations, libraries and schools in New Mexico and southern Colorado to encourage dialog and awareness on these issues. A panel discussion and oral history gathering project will be conducted with scholars from the program in Espanola, NM.

Listen to the introductory segment:


For more information contact:

Sarah Parker or Dusty Yellow Thunder

The Shift of Land program comes to you by the generous support of the following sponsors:

Our fiscal sponsor:

With additional support by: