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Latin America European Portal
REDIAL European Network of Information and Documentation on Latin America
CEISAL European Council for Social Research on Latin America
Review DELOS Desarrollo local sostenible

desiguALdades.net Working Paper Series

Review DHIAL. Desarrollo Humano e Institucional en América Latina

Year: 2013 n. 58

Leal, Claudia; Ausdal, Shawn Van. Landscapes of Freedom and Inequality: Environmental Histories of the Pacific and Caribbean Coasts of Colombia.  / Paisajes de libertad y desigueldad: Historias medioambientales de las costas del Pacífico y el Caribe de Colombia Colombia
deforestación | ganadería | sociedades post-emancipación
Siglo XIX | Siglo XX

Summary

In this comparative environmental history, we examine the divergent trajectories of Colombia’s coastal forests since the mid-19th century. In the Pacific lowlands, natural resource extraction by a black peasantry altered the forested landscape but did not transform it completely. Left by the white, merchant elite in charge of the extractive process, this post-emancipation society maintained their territorial independence and avoided significant internal differentiation. Racial divisions, however, signaled the continuation of disparities that had their origin in slavery and colonialism. In the Caribbean, by contrast, the expansion of cattle ranching better integrated the region into the nation, but at the expense of extensive deforestation and the marginalization of what had been its relatively independent peasantry. By paying attention to the ecological and social basis of landscape appropriation and change, we suggest that environmental history can help us better understand the production of inequality in Latin America.

Free numerical version | Germany Year of creation: 2011

Publisher: desiguALdades.net. Research Network on Interdependent Inequalities in Latin America

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