Malinowski Award Lecture, 2005
Learn from the Past, Be Involved in the Future
Paul L. Doughty
Asylum Seekers / Patron Seekers: Interpreting Iraqi Kurdish Migration
Diane E. King
This article examines the phenomenon of Iraqi Kurdish out-migration to the West between 1991 and 2003. It argues that migrants looked to the West and Westerners as potential patrons and were incited to migrate by their conceptualizations of patronage and clientage roles. Iraqi Kurdish migrants to the West constituted one of the largest flows of asylum-seeking clandestine migrants in the world by the late 1990s. European governments first accepted their asylum claims as “legitimate,” but later accused the migrants of being a “problem” and ceased granting asylum to most applicants. This article demonstrates how participants in the Iraqi Kurdish body politic posture themselves as clients and formulate the ideal roles of patrons in the migration process based on prior experience as clients of the state, tribal leaders, and other figures. Patronage and clientage roles provide both an interpretive frame and a motivator for the act of migrating.
Key words: migration, patronage, clientage, Kurds, Iraq
Why Chacras (Swidden Gardens) Persist: Agrobiodiversity, Food Security, and Cultural Identity in the Ecuadorian Amazon
This paper has two aims. First, it seeks to document the cultivar diversity of household swidden garden, or chacra, plots in a lowland Kichwa community in the Ecuadorian Amazon. Second, it seeks to explain why chacra production remains important, and cultivar diversity remains relatively high, despite 30 years of market integration. In order to address this issue, using both quantitative and qualitative data, the paper examines the material importance of chacra production as central to household food security, and its symbolic importance as a marker of Kichwa cultural identity. Women in the study area cultivate a total of 48 food species, some of which (particularly Manihot esculenta) include multiple varieties. Despite increasing integration with the cash economy, chacra production remains vital to lowland Kichwa food security. Chacra cultivation also remains a valued symbol of (highly gendered) cultural identity. The relationship between market-oriented and subsistence-oriented activities is not unidirectional, but rather varies over time and with socio-spatial scale.
Key words: swidden agriculture, food security, agrobiodiversity, indigenous identity, Ecuador, Amazon
Will the Market Set Them Free? Women, NGOs, and Social Enterprise in Ukraine
Sarah D. Phillips
During 1999, Counterpart International, Inc., a global partnership organization with its headquarters in the United States, introduced “social enterprise” to Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in Ukraine via a training and granting program that lasted until 2002. This article explores the potential benefits and risks that taking up strategies of social enterprise present for NGO leaders in Ukraine, examining in particular the possible effects for women NGO activists as they struggle to navigate post-socialist political, social, and economic transformations. As it has unfolded in Ukraine, social enterprise is an NGO development strategy implicitly directed towards women, who dominate in certain types of caring-focused NGOs. It is thus important to assess the potential of social enterprise initiatives to empower women in Ukraine’s emerging civil society and market economy.
Key words: NGOs, women, social enterprise, post-socialism, Ukraine
Power Relations in Participatory Research and Community Development: A Case Study from Northern England
Kate Hampshire, Elaine Hills, and Nazalie Iqbal
This paper explores power relations within a participatory health and social needs project that took place in a South Asian community in northern England. The project involved a number of different individuals and agencies, each of which began with a rather different combination of interests, agendas, resources, and power bases. Drawing on detailed observations made during the project, together with a series of evaluation interviews, we explore the ways in which these were continually re-negotiated, within a context of shifting power relations. We use a theoretical framework, derived from different interpretations of power and knowledge, and from Bourdieu’s theories of cultural and symbolic capital, to unravel these processes of change. We find shifts in the balance of power over the course of a project are possible, but are often slow and rather limited, because of the self-perpetuating power of those holding symbolic capital to define and maintain the status quo. We conclude that community participation in health and social action research can never be a single event, but should be regarded as an ongoing, iterative process, which may extend far beyond the official bounds of the project itself.
Key words: South Asian, participatory research, health services research, power relations, cultural capital, community participation
Making Sense of Disruptions: Strategies of Re-grounding of Ailing Polish Immigrants in Melbourne, Australia
Lenore Manderson and Slawomir Rapala
In addition to problems related to spatial relocation and integration into environments that are often foreign socially, culturally, and linguistically, with time migrants must also come to terms with changing bodily locations due to illness, ageing, and associated ailments. The immigrant body and the ailing body both experience life-changing disruptions. Using life histories and illness narratives, in this paper we explore how ailing Polish immigrants to Australia re-ground themselves in new locations. We identify two distinct frameworks within which re-grounding is attempted: knowledge-based, in which the individuals rely on professional knowledge brought from the country of origin; and faith-based, in which individuals rely on religious values and precepts in order to make sense of their transformed lives and bodies. These frameworks are not mutually exclusive, but rather, they function together to allow individuals to make foreign locations familiar. Which system comes to the foreground at a given time depends on the participants’ age: the younger participants tend to rely on professional experience, while older people turn towards faith. Our small sample size confounds this, however: the younger two participants are both men and have higher education levels than the older women. At the same time, among older women, severity and length of ailment was associated with greater dependency on a faith-based system.
Key words: Australia, aging, chronic illness, narratives, immigration
Marine Protected Areas in Panama: Grassroots Activism and Advocacy
In Latin America, the role of the state in funding and implementing environmental protection has been consistently inadequate. As alternative responses develop, national and international conservation NGOs replace governments in the quest for environmental sustainability. The environmental discourses and practicesand the morality accompanying resource use and conservationprivileged by the donor organizations become the environmental truth by which environmental sustainability is planned and designed. The goal of this article is to contribute to the more recent literature on power dynamics product of the collaboration among allies in global environmental and indigenous rights issues. It addresses the alliances developed among North American conservationist organizations, Panamanian authorities and NGOs, and Ngöbe indigenous peoples to create a master plan for the management of a marine protected area in the Archipelago of Bocas del Toro, Panama. I focus on the conflicts among apparent allies in the quest for environmental protection and on how the environmental truth (in the name of global environmentalism) of donor organizations shaped the creation of a management plan in the Archipelago. The process of the creation of the Assembly and the development of the plan illustrate both the efficacy and the limits of grassroots activism in situations of uneven status and power.
Key words: Marine protected areas, grassroots activism, advocacy, Caribbean, tourism
What You See Is Not Always What You Get: Aspect Dominance as a Confounding Factor in the Determination of Fishing Dependent Communities
Steve Jacob1, Michael Jepson, and Frank L Farmer
Many residents of coastal towns believe that they live in communities that are economically dependent upon commercial fishing. However, employment data indicate that fishing is a relatively minor economic component of many of these communities. We apply the concept of aspect dominance from the field of ecology to help explain this discrepancy. In addition we explore other forms of ecological dominance in regard to perceptions of fishing dependence. A key idea is that residents and sometimes researchers confuse forms of ecological dominance with economic dependence. Our study relied upon secondary and key informant data for six Florida coastal communities. In addition, we conducted a random telephone sample with 1,200 residents of these villages to establish their perceptions of the importance of commercial fishing to their communities.
Key words: Fishing Dependency, Community, Human Ecology
Forest Values of National Park Neighbors in Costa Rica
John Schelhas and Max J. Pfeffer
Global environmental concern and action have increased markedly over the past few decades. Rather than resulting in uniform environmental values across the globe, we argue that distinct environmentalisms are socially constructed in different places through the complex interactions between the global environmental values and locally unique historical, political, and environmental factors. We analyze forest-related mental and cultural modelsincluding both beliefs and valuesusing text analysis of transcripts and field notes from 67 qualitative interviews in five villages adjacent to La Amistad International Park in Costa Rica. We find that global environmental discourse has played a key role in framing the way rural people think and talk about forests. Conservation-oriented discourse has largely replaced earlier frontier views of forests as resources to be exploited and converted to agricultural lands. We find that the new forest beliefs and values are genuine, but also that they are sometimes superficial and lack motivating force. Local people are exposed to influential environmental discourses that see forests as something to be protected for heritage values and as a source of national development through ecotourism and bioprospecting, which often place forest conservation in opposition to their livelihood needs. This conflict has produced mediating discourses that acknowledge forest conservation as good while creating a legitimate place for rural landowners and their livelihood needs in the forested landscape. The result is unique local forest beliefs and values that are different from both earlier local beliefs and global and national environmental discourses.
Key words: environmental values, tropical forests, cultural models, Costa Rica