Political Ecology: An Integrative Approach to Geography and Environment-Development Studies

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9781572309166: Political Ecology: An Integrative Approach to Geography and Environment-Development Studies

This volume offers a unique, integrative perspective on the political and ecological processes shaping landscapes and resource use across the global North and South. Twelve carefully selected case studies demonstrate how contemporary geographical theories and methods can contribute to understanding key environment-and-development issues and working toward effective policies. Topics addressed include water and biodiversity resources, urban and national resource planning, scientific concepts of resource management, and ideas of nature and conservation in the context of globalization. Giving particular attention to evolving conceptions of nature-society interaction and geographical scale, an introduction and conclusion by the editors provide a clear analytical focus for the volume and summarize important developments and debates in the field.

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CONTENTS

1. Approaching Political Ecology: Society, Nature, and Scale in Human--Environment Studies, Karl S. Zimmerer & Thomas J. Bassett

Part I. Protected Areas and Conservation

2. Balancing Conservation with Development in Marine-Dependent Communities: Is Ecotourism an Empty Promise?, Emily H. Young

3. Strategies for Authenticity and Space in the Maya Biosphere Reserve, Peten, Guatemala, Juanita Sundberg
Part II. Urban and Industrial Environments

4. Toward a Political Ecology of Urban Environmental Risk: The Case of Guyana, Mark Pelling

5. Modernity and the Production of the Spanish Waterscape, 1890--1930, Erik Swyngedouw
Part III. Ecological Analysis and Theory in Resource Management and Conservation

6. The Ivorian Savannah: Global Narratives and Local Knowledge of Environmental Change, Thomas J. Bassett & Koli Bi Zueli

7. Environmental Zonation and Mountain Agriculture in Peru and Bolivia: Socioenvironmental Dynamics of Overlapping Patchworks and Agrobiodiversity Conservation, Karl S. Zimmerer

8. Environmental Science and Social Causation in the Analysis of Sahelian Pastoralism, Matthew Turner
Part IV. Geospatial Technologies and Knowledges

9. Fixed Categories in a Portable Landscape: The Causes and Consequences of Land Cover Categorization, Paul Robbins

10. GIS Representations of Nature, Political Ecology, and the Study of Land Use and Cover Change in South Africa, Brent McCusker & Daniel Weiner
Part V. North--South Environmental Histories

11. Material--Conceptual Landscape Transformation and the Emergence of the Pristine Myth in Early Colonial Mexico, Andrew Sluyter

12. The Production of Nature: Colonial Recasting of African Landscape in Serengeti National Park, Roderick P. Neumann

13. Agroenvironments and Slave Strategies in the Diffusion of Rice Culture to the Americas, Judith Carney
14. Future Directions in Political Ecology: Nature--Society Fusions and Scales of Interaction, Karl S. Zimmerer & Thomas J. Bassett

Index

Review:

"An illuminating and comprehensive volume of case studies in political ecology, edited by two of the field's most distinguished analysts. Addressing issues of politics, landscape, and representation, chapters examine topics ranging from urban waterscapes to mountain agriculture, from GIS and environmental science to ecotourism and slavery. The book provides a tour d'horizon of political ecology through its foundational discipline, geography. Useful for students, scholars, and practitioners, this will be an indispensable text for all readers interested in the biophysical and social forces that shape land use."--Susanna Hecht, PhD, Department of Urban Planning, UCLA School of Public Policy and Social Research

"Zimmerer and Bassett have assembled an important set of classic and newer essays that emphasize the full integration of ecological process into political ecology. All the chapters take seriously the analysis of nature's agency in political ecology, enabling the authors to collectively 'push the envelope' of work in this dynamic field. While authors are primarily geographers, the volume also incorporates sociological and anthropological perspectives. The editors' introduction and conclusion demonstrate the wide relevance of political ecology to environmental understandings and change, while transcending traditional environmental management and sustainable development paradigms. Addressing interwoven themes of scale, history, ecology, epistemology, and access, this provocative book will be useful in classroom and research settings. It is sure to become an important, classic text for political ecologists of all stripes."--Nancy Lee Peluso, Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and 6Management, University of California, Berkeley


"The editors...use their introduction and conclusion to suggest that these articles lay out a domain of work constituting a particularly geographical contribution to political ecology. That is what sets this political ecology text apart from others that have been published recently and what makes it particularly helpful, especially for teaching geography. Its exploration of connections between political ecology and more general concerns within the discipline...offers a suggested way for thinking through the relationships between geography and this more interdisciplinary subfield....In that set of required texts listed at the top of the first page of future syllabi for political ecology courses, this one will occupy an important slot for a good many years." (The Geographical Review 2003-09-26)

"This is a worthwhile text for readers at any level, as much for the outstanding substantive chapters as for the front and back matter....this book is particularly appropriate for advanced undergraduate reading courses or introductory graduate courses on human-environment relationships. The chapters' adherence to multiscalar (both temporal and spatial) analysis empowers those interested in studying environmental issues to break away from monolithic theoretical constructs." (Annals of the Association of American Geographers 2003-09-26)

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