A Reconsideration of Identity, Politics, and Place in Amazonia
Publication Year: 2010
Published by: University of Nebraska Press
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Table of Contents
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List of Illustrations
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This book is the product of considerable hard work by numerous individuals. Without their assistance this project would have been far more difficult and substantially less rewarding. Our first debt goes to the anthropologists who contributed to Editing Eden. These accomplished scholars greeted our proposal enthusiastically, and they made this book what it is through the quality of their work and their intellectual commitment. The common themes that emerge in these...
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Editing Eden traditionally has been the job of utopian visionaries, and modesty dictates that we qualify our title at the outset. The Eden around which this book is built, the great basin of Amazonia, certainly has drawn many toward excess — an excess of superlatives, an excess of embellishment, and an excess of drama. Travel writing becomes ...
Part 1: Myth, Meaning, Modernity, and Representation
1. Indigenous Capitalisms: Ecotourism, Cultural Reproduction, and the Logic of Capital in Ecuador’s Upper Amazon
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The finger points at me, indicating that I’m now expected to sling a drum over my shoulder, beat out a rhythm, scoot around the wooden floor, and initiate a courtship dance with a Kichwa woman on the other side of the room. It’s all part of a cultural presentation on the last night of a student trip to Capirona, an indigenous community involved in...
2. Fractal Subjectivities: An Amazonian-Inspired Critique of Globalization Theory
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Anna Tsing (2004), like many other current theorists, has been writing innovative things about globalization. Her recent book problematizes “scale” in a way that questions the local/global dichotomy through the trope of “friction.” Her work joins that of many others complicating anthropology’s traditional focus on the local by shifting more focus to...
3. The Portrayal of Colombian Indigenous Amazonian Peoples by the National Press, 1988–2006
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In this chapter I examine articles published in Colombia’s two national daily newspapers on the country’s Amazonian indigenous communities. I explore the ways the journalists and photographers working for El Espectador and El Tiempo construct the differences between indigenous Amazonians and the country’s nonindigenous citizens, ...
4. Cannibal Tourists and Savvy Savages: Understanding Amazonian Modernities
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The ideological construction of indigenous peoples as obstacles to “progress” in public discourse, the media, and anthropological writings has served to enable and encourage violence against them. From the initial charges of cannibalism made against Amazonian peoples in the sixteenth century, there has been a continuous external discourse on...
Part 2: Ethnopolitics, Territory, and Notions of Community
5. For Love or Money?: Indigenous Materialism and Humanitarian Agendas
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The uneasy tension between friendship and material giving is an uncomfortable aspect of personal relations between native Amazonians causes. Do they like me, or do they just like what I can give them? is a recurring question for many of the aid workers, teachers, health personnel, anthropologists, activists, and others who approach...
6. Alternative Development in Putumayo, Colombia: Bringing Back the State through the Creation of Community and “Productive Social Capital”?
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In July 2003, when I was conducting fieldwork in the department of Putumayo in Colombia’s Western Amazon, I was invited by the director of Vida y Futuro, an NGO headquartered in the Andean region, to visit “the biggest and most high-tech alternative development project, an agro-industrial project that has become a model to be replicated.” ...
7. Normative Views, Strategic Views: The Geopolitical Maps in the Ethnic Territorialities of Putumayo
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In Putumayo, a colonization frontier in the southwestern Amazon of Colombia, the proliferation of demands for ethnic recognition propitiated by multicultural policy has posed a challenge for the institutions that handle state ethnic policies. These institutions attempt to maneuver in the midst of three related circumstances: the constant increase...
8. Indigenous Leadership and the Shifting Politics of Development in Ecuador’s Amazon
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In early 1998 I walked into the usually tranquil offices of the Federation of Indigenous Organizations of Napo, now renamed the Federation of Kichwa Nationalities de Napo (FONAKIN), as I did almost every morning, only this time to find a bustle of activity. The president of the Federation, Mariano Huatatoca, enthusiastically greeted me. It wasn’t...
9. Worlds at Cross-Purposes
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What do chapters 5 through 8 have in common? Beyond the obvious context of interethnic relations in four South American countries, they raise issues that clearly speak to each other. Despite the diversity of local situations, one can easily detect the pervasive concern with goods, territories, and ethnic identity. With these three elements in...
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Page Count: 306
Illustrations: 5 illustrations, 1 map
Publication Year: 2010