The Cultural Context of Biodiversity
Seen and Unseen Dimensions of Indigenous Knowledge among Q'eqchi' Communities in Guatemala
Publication Year: 2010
Published by: The University of Akron Press
Title Page, Copyright
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Many thanks are due to numerous individuals and institutions who have contributed to the various stages of my research and the final texture of this thesis. Above and beyond the privilege of being freely admitted to participate in the lives of indigenous farmers and their families in several peasant communities ...
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At the end of March 2003, while helping a Q'eqch� farmer in a remote village in Alta Verapaz with harvesting his crop, I observed clouds of smoke in the sky. I asked about their origin and supposed the informant would attribute the smoke to extensive forest fires in the northern lowlands. ...
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1 INTRODUCTION – from global to local
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In the context of global political governance, environmental issues have become increasingly prominent in the past two decades. Among other major international agreements that have been reached in the 1990s, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) paid particular attention to the protection of the ...
2 THE GLOBAL CONTEXT – international policies and local environments
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In recent decades, environmental issues have become increasingly recognised in international politics. In particular, the effort to protect the ›global commons‹ became a major theme of contemporary debate. Since the late 1980s, conservation and sustainable development appeared as key concepts in contemporary ...
3 THE DISCURSIVE CONTEXT – conceptual approaches from anthropology
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While the previous discussion introduced the issue of biodiversity conservation and the role of local and indigenous cultures and resource use patterns therein based on the political discourse, the present chapter turns to the field of academic discourse. Even before the 1990s with the arising of large UN conferences, ...
4 THE LOCAL CONTEXT – national policies and indigenous communities
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While the previous chapter drew together recent discursive threads, this chapter turns to the local context, which is conceptualised as an enlarged frame of spatial and temporal scales in which findings of the field investigation are embedded. Leaving behind the frames of global and discursive discussions, it intentionally sets ...
5 LOCAL EXPRESSIONS OF INDIGENOUS KNOWLEDGE
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Drawing on a wide scale of framing contexts, the following sections move to the focal point of the study and document a selected range of indigenous knowledge expressions. The local context is understood in the sense of a universal frame in which knowledge matters and is formed by phenomena that are physically ...
6 CONCLUDING REMARKS – from local to global
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In the past two decades, biodiversity conservation has become a highly prominent issue of environmental discourse in international and national fora. Fifteen years after the negotiations in Rio, the CBD has become one of the most important instruments guiding the sustainable use and protection of the global natural resources. ...
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At the end of my last stay in the Guatemalan lowlands, I had a conversation with an informant in San Benito about the meaning of life. We shared our ideas about what is of major importance to us regardless of different cultural backgrounds. I asked the farmer with whom we had been working for a long time: ...
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Page Count: 300
Illustrations: 49 photos
Publication Year: 2010