This study aimed to find answers to different questions related to the phenomenon which links family farmers to the poppy cultivation. Particularly, it was aimed to find whether the rationality to be imposed by the development strategy of the illicit drugs combat policy is compatible with the dynamics of the problem and why its actions are sustained even when their failure is evident. A case study in the Silvia municipality, Cauca Department, southern region of Colombia, was used as a research strategy. Being this a problem which can not be simply reduced to a matter of legality or income, within this perspective, this research represents a reflection that brings together the conflict, heterogeneity and similarities in the manifestations of the “new countryside” in the territories of Latin America, in the context of contemporary capitalism. Results show that the verified failure of the illicit drugs combat policy in Colombia proves important inconsistencies between the rationality of policy formulators and the dynamic of the territories concerned with the phenomenon.


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