Nature, Livelihoods, and Identities in South Asia
Edited by Gunnel Cederlof and K. Sivaramakrishnan
The works presented in this collection take environmental scholarship in South Asia into novel territory by exploring how questions of national identity become entangled with environmental concerns in Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan, and India. The essays provide insight into the motivations of colonial and national governments in controlling or managing nature, and bring into fresh perspective the different kinds of regional political conflicts that invoke nationalist sentiment through claims on nature. In doing all this, the volume also offers new ways to think about nationalism and, more specifically, nationalism in South Asia from the vantage point of interdisciplinary environmental studies.
- Published: June 2014
- Subject Listing: Anthropology, Asian Studies, Environmental Studies, Political Science
- Bibliographic information: 376 pp., 6 x 9 in.
- Territorial rights: N / A In South Asia
- Series: Culture, Place, and Nature Series
The contributors to this innovative volume show that manifestations of nationalism have long and complex histories in South Asia. Terrestrial entities, imagined in terms of dense ecological networks of relationships, have often been the space or reference point for national aspirations, as shared memories of Mother Nature or appropriated economic, political, and religious geographies. In recent times, different groups in South Asia have claimed and appropriated ancient landscapes and territories for the purpose of locating and justifying a specific and utopian version of nation by linking its origin to their nature-mediated attachments to these landscapes. The topics covered include forests, agriculture, marine fisheries, parks, sacred landscapes, property rights, trade, and economic development.
Gunnel Cederlof is associate professor of history, Uppsala University, Sweden. K. Sivaramakrishnan is professor of anthropology and international studies and director of the South Asia Center, Jackson School of International Studies, at the University of Washington. The other contributors are Nina Bhatt, Vinita Damodaran, Claude A. Garcia, Urs Geiser, Gštz Hoeppe, Bengt G. Karlsson, Antje Linkenbach, Wolfgang Mey, Kathleen D. Morrison, J. P. Pascal, and Sarah Southwold-Llewellyn.
"Ecological Nationalisms is an unusually coherent anthology, focused on the complex intersections among identity, ethnicity, political economy, and ecology in South Asia. . . . An important resource for a broad interdisciplinary audience in the social sciences."
- Ann Grodzins Gold, Syracuse University
Preface and Acknowledgments
Notes on Contributors
1. Introduction: Ecological Nationalisms: Claiming Nature for Making History / K. Sivaramakrishnan and Gunnel Cederlof
I. Regional Natures, Nations, and Empire
2. Environmental History, the Spice Trade, and the State in South India / Kathleen D. Morrison
3. The Toda Tiger: Debates on Custom, Utility, and Rights in Nature, South India 1820-1843 / Gunnel Cederlof
4. Contested Forests in North-West Pakistan: The Bureaucracy between the "Ecological," the "National," and the Realities of a Nation's Frontier / Urs Geiser
II. Competing Nationalisms
5. Indigenous Forests: Rights, Discourses, and Resistance in Chotanagpur, 1860-2002 / Vinita Damodaran
6. Nature and Politics: The Case of Uttarakhand, North India / Antje Linkenbach
7. Indigenous Natures: Forest and Community Dynamics in Meghalaya, North-East India / Bengt G. Karlsson
8. Sacred Forests of Kodagu: Ecological Value and Social Role / Claude A. Garcia and J.-P. Pascal
III. Commodified Nature and National Visions
9. Knowledge Against the State: Local Perceptions of Government Interventions in the Fishery (Kerala, India) / Gotz Hoeppe
10. Shifting Cultivation, Images, and Development in the Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh / Wolfgang Mey
11. Forest Managementin a Pukhtun Community: The Construction of Identities / Sarah Southwold-Llewellyn
12. "There Is No Life Without Wildlife": National Parks and National Identity in Bardia National Park, Western Nepal / Nina Bhatt