Extracting Humans from Nature

Extracting Humans from Nature Traditional and indigenous people can claim incontrovertible rights to their land. As morally responsible humans we must support their struggle. This responsibility does not mean that as conservationists we must count as conservation everything that these people have done and wish to do. As independent peoples with rights to self‐determination, their future should be in their own hands—whether that future meets our expectations or not. It is remarkable that we find ourselves making this obvious point to a group of experienced and savvy professionals who have spent considerable time in defense of indigenous and traditional peoples. We won't claim to tell Steve Schwartzman and his co‐authors about the political virtues or shortcomings of rubber tappers and Amazonian Indians, because they are experts in such matters, insofar as outsiders can be. Nevertheless, speaking on behalf of those peoples as if their interests were identical with conservation, biodiversity, and parks is disingenuous. In taking such a tack, the authors enter a twisted labyrinth of reasoning, which we find tortuous and politically dangerous for both conservation and forest‐dwelling peoples. First, we thought that in various ways we had already published conclusions similar to those in the paper by Schwartzman et al. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Conservation Biology Wiley

Extracting Humans from Nature

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Copyright © 2000 Wiley Subscription Services, Inc., A Wiley Company
ISSN
0888-8892
eISSN
1523-1739
D.O.I.
10.1046/j.1523-1739.2000.00135.x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Traditional and indigenous people can claim incontrovertible rights to their land. As morally responsible humans we must support their struggle. This responsibility does not mean that as conservationists we must count as conservation everything that these people have done and wish to do. As independent peoples with rights to self‐determination, their future should be in their own hands—whether that future meets our expectations or not. It is remarkable that we find ourselves making this obvious point to a group of experienced and savvy professionals who have spent considerable time in defense of indigenous and traditional peoples. We won't claim to tell Steve Schwartzman and his co‐authors about the political virtues or shortcomings of rubber tappers and Amazonian Indians, because they are experts in such matters, insofar as outsiders can be. Nevertheless, speaking on behalf of those peoples as if their interests were identical with conservation, biodiversity, and parks is disingenuous. In taking such a tack, the authors enter a twisted labyrinth of reasoning, which we find tortuous and politically dangerous for both conservation and forest‐dwelling peoples. First, we thought that in various ways we had already published conclusions similar to those in the paper by Schwartzman et al.

Journal

Conservation BiologyWiley

Published: Oct 18, 2000

References

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