Introduction: Conserving and extracting nature: Environmental politics and livelihoods in the new “middle grounds” of Amazonia

Casey High, Elliott Oakley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

While Amazonian people are well known in anthropology for challenging modernist ideas of “nature,” extractive industries and development projects have placed them at the forefront of conflicts around the environment. In 1995 Beth Conklin and Laura Graham identified these interfaces as increasingly translocal, leading them to describe an emerging “middle ground” that situates indigenous Amazonian people and Western environmentalists as natural allies. In recognizing twenty-five years of the Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology and Conklin and Graham’s seminal article, this Jubilee special issue revisits the middle ground concept in terms of intensifying interface relationships in Amazonia. In conceptualizing the “new middle grounds” of conservation and extractive economies, we explore processes of accommodation, partnership, contestation, and potential domination that are grounded in local perspectives and practices. In this way we aim to extend the focus on radical difference in arguments about Amazonia to recognize the complex ways in which indigenous experience is also deeply embedded in Latin American culture and politics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)236-247
Number of pages12
JournalThe Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology (JLACA)
Early online date29 Jun 2020
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 29 Jun 2020

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • environmental politics
  • extractive economies
  • middle ground
  • conservation
  • livelihoods
  • Amazonia

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