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See/download the pre-publication open access versions below.
- Piergiorgio Di Giminiani and Marcelo González Gálvez: Who Owns the Water? The Relation as Unfinished Objectivation in the Mapuche Lived World
- Laur Kiik: Wild-ing the Ethnography of Conservation: Writing Nature’s Value and Agency In
- Jan Patrick Heiss: A Hausa Man Makes a Decision: A Contribution to the Anthropological Perspective on Decision-Making
- Sandra Pannell: Framing the Loss of Solace: Issues and Challenges in Researching Indigenous Compensation Claims
- Celine Travesi: Knowing and Being Known. Approaching Australian Indigenous Tourism through Aboriginal and Non-Aboriginal Politics of Knowing
Piergiorgio Di Giminiani and Marcelo González Gálvez
Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Who Owns the Water? The Relation as Unfinished Objectivation in the Mapuche Lived World
Anthropological approaches to relations have customarily relied on ethnographic accounts of relations empirically observed through fieldwork, overlooking, in general, the ways in which the very notion of relation is locally conceptualised and put into practice. In this article, we provide a general characterization of how relations are theorised and practiced in indigenous southern Chile. We propose the expression ‘unfinished objectivation’ to refer to an ideal type of relationship in the Mapuche lived world, which corresponds neither to a subject-object dichotomy nor to a totally intersubjective model. Unfinished objectivation presupposes a type of relation in which those entities that are connected are submitted to the force of one another, but only to the unstable and contingent point before which they lose their irreducible autonomy and agency. To explore the model of unfinished objectivation we focus on the human-water relationship, which illustrates the tension between the need for objectivation, as well as recognition of the subjectivity of beings involved in the relationship. Nowhere is this tension clearer than in conflicts over water rights and ownership status, which have arisen from the commodification of water resources in neoliberal Chile.
Oxford University, UK; Tallinn University, Estonia
Wild-ing the Ethnography of Conservation: Writing Nature’s Value and Agency In
When reading ethnographic literature on nature conservation, one may wonder: where has nature gone? Social anthropologists have written nuanced ethnographies of how the environmental projects of governments and transnational NGOs encounter, dispossess, clash culturally with, and try to govern native people across the world. Yet, these diverse ethnographies often say little about what motivates those encounters firstly: local and global nature, especially wildlife, plants, and the planet’s ecological crisis. Thus, this paper seeks ways how ethnographic writing on conservation practice could better reflect that the planet’s many self-willed, struggling, and valued non-humans, too, enter conservation’s encounters. To find paths toward such a “wild-ing” of ethnography, the paper locates and reviews disparate materials from across the social-anthropological literature on biodiversity conservation. The review is structured through three questions: How does and could the ethnography of conservation represent nature’s value? How can it show that animals, plants, and other nature make and meet worlds? How can it incorporate natural-science data about non-human worlds and ecological crisis? Altogether, we understand nature conservation clearer through the interdisciplinary and more-than-human ethnography of world-making encounters. Such wilder ethnography may also better connect people’s suffering and nature’s vanishing – as problems both for anthropology and conservation science.
Jan Patrick Heiss
Department of Social Anthropology and Empirical Cultural Studies, University of Zurich
A Hausa Man Makes a Decision: A Contribution to the Anthropological Perspective on Decision-Making
In anthropology, decision-making has mainly been studied from two perspectives: rationalist and ethnographic. These approaches lack a theoretical basis which would integrate their findings in a coherent manner. Taking inspiration from Tugendhat and Berthoz, this article argues that a way out of this impasse is to conceptualise decision-making as an action. At the same time, this conceptualisation allows us to establish a continuum of decision-making processes from simple through complex to fundamental, and to understand these processes as malleable across milieux, societies and cultures. This article also goes beyond this by discussing the decision-making process that led a Hausa villager from Niger to decide not to migrate. This discussion shows that the anthropological literature has largely overlooked a type of decision that could be called a ‘maturing decision’. It also sheds light on the role of emotions in decision-making and on the constitutive role of emic ideas about decision-making in these processes.
School of Social Sciences, University of Western Australia and College of Arts, Society & Education, James Cook University
Framing the Loss of Solace: Issues and Challenges in Researching Indigenous Compensation Claims
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The 2016 judgment in the ‘Timber Creek’ compensation case (Griffiths v Northern Territory of Australia (no. 3) (2016) FCA 900) signals an end to an era of extinguishment-related injustice and inequality, representing, as it does, the first litigated Federal Court award of compensation for the loss or impairment of rights and interests, under the 1993 Native Title Act. In this paper I explore some of the methodological challenges and conceptual issues confronting anthropologists involved in researching compensation claims. In drawing upon my experience in researching two such claims, I discuss how the issues of gender, resource development, environmental transformation, the Stolen Generation, and the history of Indigenous-European relations in remote and rural Australia impact upon investigations into the loss or diminution of traditional attachments to land. In conceptualising this loss of connection, I discuss material relating to the ‘anthropology of emotions’, and I point to some of the obstacles encountered when talking about emotions cross-culturally. In conclusion, I explore research undertaken into the social and psychological impacts of ecosystem distress, loss of place, and environmental change, and I posit the value of Glenn Albrecht’s concept of ‘solastalgia’ (Albrecht 2005) in framing research into the loss of solace, and in expanding upon the legal notion of this loss as ‘inconvenience’ and ‘injured feelings’.
Aix-Marseille University, EHESS, CNRS - CREDO UMR 7308
Knowing and Being Known. Approaching Australian Indigenous Tourism through Aboriginal and Non-Aboriginal Politics of Knowing
Based on ethnographic research conducted with Bardi and Jawi people, an Indigenous group from the Northwestern Kimberley region of Western Australia, the aim of this paper is to approach the complexities related to Indigenous tourism in Australia through the politics of knowing and not-knowing as embodied by Indigenous tour guides and non-Indigenous tourists. It examines the notion of knowing (or not knowing) and its usages by Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in the context of their tourist encounter. ‘Knowing’ represents an important aspect through which Aboriginal people and their non-Indigenous guests negotiate their interactions. In particular, the paper shows how Indigenous and non-Indigenous expectations from tourism lead actors to adopt divergent positions and to assert renewed claims in relation to knowledge or knowing, casting new light on issues of self-representation and empowerment in the domain of Indigenous tourism.
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