Unearthing Conflict

Author: Fabiana Li
Publisher: Duke University Press Books
ISBN: 9780822358190
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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In Unearthing Conflict Fabiana Li analyzes the aggressive expansion and modernization of mining in Peru since the 1990s to tease out the dynamics of mining-based protests. Issues of water scarcity and pollution, the loss of farmland, and the degradation of sacred land are especially contentious. She traces the emergence of the conflicts by discussing the smelter-town of La Oroya—where people have lived with toxic emissions for almost a century—before focusing her analysis on the relatively new Yanacocha gold mega-mine. Debates about what kinds of knowledge count as legitimate, Li argues, lie at the core of activist and corporate mining campaigns. Li pushes against the concept of "equivalence"—or methods with which to quantify and compare things such as pollution—to explain how opposing groups interpret environmental regulations, assess a project’s potential impacts, and negotiate monetary compensation for damages. This politics of equivalence is central to these mining controversies, and Li uncovers the mechanisms through which competing parties create knowledge, assign value, arrive at contrasting definitions of pollution, and construct the Peruvian mountains as spaces under constant negotiation.

Unearthing Conflict

Author: Fabiana Li
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 0822375869
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
Download Now
In Unearthing Conflict Fabiana Li analyzes the aggressive expansion and modernization of mining in Peru since the 1990s to tease out the dynamics of mining-based protests. Issues of water scarcity and pollution, the loss of farmland, and the degradation of sacred land are especially contentious. She traces the emergence of the conflicts by discussing the smelter-town of La Oroya—where people have lived with toxic emissions for almost a century—before focusing her analysis on the relatively new Yanacocha gold mega-mine. Debates about what kinds of knowledge count as legitimate, Li argues, lie at the core of activist and corporate mining campaigns. Li pushes against the concept of "equivalence"—or methods with which to quantify and compare things such as pollution—to explain how opposing groups interpret environmental regulations, assess a project’s potential impacts, and negotiate monetary compensation for damages. This politics of equivalence is central to these mining controversies, and Li uncovers the mechanisms through which competing parties create knowledge, assign value, arrive at contrasting definitions of pollution, and construct the Peruvian mountains as spaces under constant negotiation.

Mining Capitalism

Author: Stuart Kirsch
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520281705
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Corporations are among the most powerful institutions of our time, but they are also responsible for a wide range of harmful social and environmental impacts. Consequently, political movements and nongovernmental organizations increasingly contest the risks that corporations pose to people and nature. Mining Capitalism examines the strategies through which corporations manage their relationships with these critics and adversaries. By focusing on the conflict over the Ok Tedi copper and gold mine in Papua New Guinea, Stuart Kirsch tells the story of a slow-moving environmental disaster and the international network of indigenous peoples, advocacy groups, and lawyers that sought to protect local rivers and rain forests. Along the way, he analyzes how corporations promote their interests by manipulating science and invoking the discourses of sustainability and social responsibility. Based on two decades of anthropological research, this book is comparative in scope, showing readers how similar dynamics operate in other industries around the world.

Sovereignty s Entailments

Author: Paul Nadasdy
Publisher: University of Toronto Press
ISBN: 1487515731
Format: PDF, Kindle
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In recent decades, indigenous peoples in the Yukon have signed land claim and self-government agreements that spell out the nature of government-to-government relations and grant individual First Nations significant, albeit limited, powers of governance over their peoples, lands, and resources. Those agreements, however, are predicated on the assumption that if First Nations are to qualify as governments at all, they must be fundamentally state-like, and they frame First Nation powers in the culturally contingent idiom of sovereignty. Based on over five years of ethnographic research carried out in the southwest Yukon, Sovereignty’s Entailments is a close ethnographic analysis of everyday practices of state formation in a society whose members do not take for granted the cultural entailments of sovereignty. This approach enables Nadasdy to illustrate the full scope and magnitude of the "cultural revolution" that is state formation and expose the culturally specific assumptions about space, time, and sociality that lie at the heart of sovereign politics. Nadasdy’s timely and insightful work illuminates how the process of state formation is transforming Yukon Indian people’s relationships with one another, animals, and the land.

Environment and Citizenship in Latin America

Author: Alex Latta
Publisher: Berghahn Books
ISBN: 0857457489
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Scholarship related to environmental questions in Latin America has only recently begun to coalesce around citizenship as both an empirical site of inquiry and an analytical frame of reference. This has led to a series of new insights and perspectives, but few efforts have been made to bring these various approaches into a sustained conversation across different social, temporal and geographic contexts. This volume is the result of a collaborative endeavour to advance debates on environmental citizenship, while simultaneously and systematically addressing broader theoretical and methodological questions related to the particularities of studying environment and citizenship in Latin America. Providing a window onto leading scholarship in the field, the book also sets an ambitious agenda to spark further research.

Domesticating Democracy

Author: Susan Helen Ellison
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 0822371782
Format: PDF, Docs
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In Domesticating Democracy Susan Helen Ellison examines foreign-funded Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) organizations that provide legal aid and conflict resolution to vulnerable citizens in El Alto, Bolivia. Advocates argue that these programs help residents cope with their interpersonal disputes and economic troubles while avoiding an overburdened legal system and cumbersome state bureaucracies. Ellison shows that ADR programs do more than that—they aim to change the ways Bolivians interact with the state and with global capitalism, making them into self-reliant citizens. ADR programs frequently encourage Bolivians to renounce confrontational expressions of discontent, turning away from courtrooms, physical violence, and street protest and coming to the negotiation table. Nevertheless, residents of El Alto find creative ways to take advantage of these micro-level resources while still seeking justice and a democratic system capable of redressing the structural violence and vulnerability that ADR fails to treat.

Extractive Relations

Author: John R. Owen
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1783535091
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Extractive Relations explores the nature of industrial power and its role in shaping what we understand to be the global mining sector. The authors examine issues at the forefront of contemporary debates: corporate obligations in safeguarding the rights of people displaced by mining, the recognition of community rights and interests in supporting or opposing mining developments, the handling of non-judicial grievances and workability of corporate remedy systems, and the logic of community relations departments in navigating these issues inside and outside of the typical modern mining establishment. The authors develop a unique theoretical approach that highlights the different types and uses of power in these settings. This perspective is supported by the authors' own sustained engagement with the mining sector over many years, drawing on cases from over twenty countries. The analysis of these issues from both 'inside' and 'outside' the sector is a key point of differentiation. For readers seeking to understand how mining companies interpret and interact with the communities and interests around their operations, this book provides invaluable insight and analysis.

Nature Choice and Social Power

Author: Erica Schoenberger
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1135051585
Format: PDF, Kindle
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We are at an environmental impasse. Many blame our personal choices about the things we consume and the way we live. This is only part of the problem. Different forms of social power - political, economic and ideological - structure the choices we have available. This book analyses how we make social and environmental history and why we end up where we do. Using case studies from different environmental domains – earth and water, air and fire – Nature, Choice and Social Power examines the form that social power takes and how it can harm the environment and hinder our efforts to act in our own best interests. The case studies challenge conventional wisdoms about why gold is valuable, why the internal combustion engine triumphed, and when and why suburbs sprawled. The book shows how the power of individuals, the power of classes, the power of the market and the power of the state at different times and in different ways were critical to setting us on a path to environmental degradation. It also challenges conventional wisdoms about what we need to do now. Rather than reducing consumption and shrinking from outcomes we don’t want, it proposes growing towards outcomes we do want. We invested massive resources in creating our problems; it will take equally large investments to fix them. Written in a clear and engaging style, the book is underpinned with a political economy framework and addresses how we should understand our responsibility to the environment and to each other as individuals within a large and impersonal system.

Leviathans at the Gold Mine

Author: Alex Golub
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 082237739X
Format: PDF, Docs
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Leviathans at the Gold Mine is an ethnographic account of the relationship between the Ipili, an indigenous group in Papua New Guinea, and the large international gold mine operating on their land. It was not until 1939 that Australian territorial patrols reached the Ipili. By 1990, the third largest gold mine on the planet was operating in their valley. Alex Golub examines how "the mine" and "the Ipili" were brought into being in relation to one another, and how certain individuals were authorized to speak for the mine and others to speak for the Ipili. Considering the relative success of the Ipili in their negotiations with a multinational corporation, Golub argues that a unique conjuncture of personal relationships and political circumstances created a propitious moment during which the dynamic and fluid nature of Ipili culture could be used to full advantage. As that moment faded away, social problems in the valley increased. The Ipili now struggle with the extreme social dislocation brought about by the massive influx of migrants and money into their valley.

Living with Oil

Author: Lisa Breglia
Publisher: University of Texas Press
ISBN: 0292744617
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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For decades, Mexico has been one of the world’s top non-OPEC oil exporters, but since the 2004 peak and subsequent decline of the massive offshore oilfield—Cantarell—the prospects for the country have worsened. Living with Oil takes a unique look at the cultural and economic dilemmas in this locale, focusing on residents in the fishing community of Isla Aguada, Campeche, who experienced the long-term repercussions of a 1979 oil spill that at its height poured out 30,000 barrels a day, a blowout eerily similar to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster. Tracing the interplay of the global energy market and the struggle it creates between citizens, the state, and multinational corporations, this study also provides lessons in the tug-of-war between environmentalism and the lure of profits. In Mexico, oil has held status as a symbol of nationalist pride as well as a key economic asset that supports the state’s everyday operations. Capturing these dilemmas in a country now facing a national security crisis at the hands of violent drug traffickers, cultural anthropologist Lisa Breglia covers issues of sovereignty, security, and stability in Mexico’s post-peak future. The first in-depth account of the local effects of peak oil in Mexico, emphasizing the everyday lives and livelihoods of coastal Campeche residents, Living with Oil demonstrates important aspects of the political economy of energy while showing vivid links between the global energy marketplace and the individual lives it affects.