The Nature of Borders
Salmon, Boundaries, and Bandits on the Salish Sea
Lissa K. Wadewitz
- $25.95s paperback (9780295991825) Add to Cart
- hardcover not available
- Published: June 2012
- Subject Listing: Native American Studies, Environmental Studies
- Bibliographic information: 328 pp., 27 illus., 7 maps, 6 x 9 in.
- Territorial rights: World Rights except Canada
- Series: Emil and Kathleen Sick Book Series in Western History and Biography
Winner of the Western History Association's Hal K. Rothman Award for best book in environmental history
John Lyman Book Award Winner in the category of Naval and Maritime Science and Technology (North American Society for Oceanic History)
For centuries, borders have been central to salmon management customs on the Salish Sea, but how those borders were drawn has had very different effects on the Northwest salmon fishery. Native peoples who fished the Salish Sea - which includes Puget Sound in Washington State, the Strait of Georgia in British Columbia, and the Strait of Juan de Fuca - drew social and cultural borders around salmon fishing locations and found ways to administer the resource in a sustainable way. Nineteenth-century Euro-Americans, who drew the Anglo-American border along the forty-ninth parallel, took a very different approach and ignored the salmon's patterns and life cycle. As the canned salmon industry grew and more people moved into the region, class and ethnic relations changed. Soon illegal fishing, broken contracts, and fish piracy were endemic - conditions that contributed to rampant overfishing, social tensions, and international mistrust. The Nature of Borders is about the ecological effects of imposing cultural and political borders on this critical West Coast salmon fishery.
This transnational history provides an understanding of the modern Pacific salmon crisis and is particularly instructive as salmon conservation practices increasingly approximate those of the pre-contact Native past. The Nature of Borders reorients borderlands studies toward the Canada-U.S. border and also provides a new view of how borders influenced fishing practices and related management efforts over time.
"Lissa Wadewitz has packed an amazing amount of history, both human and natural, into this slim, lucid and entertaining history of the Salish Sea and the borders that run through it. More than that, she uses the history to argue for a commons that could save both the Pacific Northwest's salmon and its fishers. This is the first book anyone interested in Pacific salmon should read." -Richard White, author of Railroaded
"Wadewitz identifies an important environmental historical problem - how people make and challenge boundaries - and situates her investigation in a rich and complex case. It would be hard to imagine a site better suited to a transnational investigation in environmental history than the Salish Sea." - Matthew Evenden, author of Fish versus Power: An Environmental History of the Fraser River
"An excellent and timely examination of how humans have organized ecological and social space across time, and of the implications of boundary making processes on people and nature alike." - Joseph E. Taylor III, author of Making Salmon: An Environmental History of the Northwest Fishery Crisis
Lissa K. Wadewitz is assistant professor of history and environmental studies at Linfield College in McMinnville, Oregon.
Watch the book trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ffLPgtCYHAandfeature=channel_video_title
Pacific Borders: An Introduction
1 Native Borders
2 Fish, Fur, and Faith
3 Remaking Native Space
4 Fishing the Line: Border Bandits and Labor Unrest
5 Pirates of the Salish Sea
6 Policing the Border
7 Conclusion: The Future of Salish Sea Salmon
"An excellent book that covers much ground and joins in the project of reorienting borderlands history in North America. It is suitable for both a lay audience and for use in the classroom." -Evan C. Rothera, Indigenous Peoples Issues and Resources, February 2013
"At the risk of straining the metaphor, her book explores uncharted waters and does so masterfully. Wadewitz has just set the bar incredibly high for future historians who also want to turn their backs to the land and gaze out to those coastal waters." -Sheila M. McManus, H-Borderlands, September 2012
"Here is a well-written Northwest history from a different angle." -Mike Dillon, City Living, September 2012