"This is an excellent collection of articles. . . . All are clearly written and any of them could be used in undergraduate teaching. Moreover, the range of case studies is impressively global. . . . The articles all exhibit a good capacity to provoke. . . . The result is an enjoyable book that is likely to be useful to teachers, students and practitioners of environmentalism." - Anthropological Forum
Anthropologists know that conservation often disempowers already under-privileged groups, and that it also fails to protect environments. Through a series of ethnographic studies, this book argues that the real problem is not the disappearance of "pristine nature" or even the land-use practices of uneducated people. Rather, what we know about culturally determined patterns of consumption, production and unequal distribution, suggests that critical attention would be better turned on discourses of "primitiveness" and "pristine nature" so prevalent within conservation ideology, and on the historically formed power and exchange relationships that they help perpetuate.
David G. Anderson is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Aberdeen.
Eeva Berglund was Lecturer in Anthropology at Goldsmiths College from 1998 to 2002 and has written on the anthropology and history of environmental politics.