The Center for the Analysis of Social Ecological Landscapes (CASEL), the Department of Anthropology and the Department of Geography presents the talk:
The Anthropology of Rainforest Destruction
Jeffrey Hoelle, University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB)
The Amazon rainforest is a land of incredible biological and cultural diversity that many consider worthy of protection, yet the forest continues to fall. While we know that a combination of economic factors and governmental policies contribute to these destructive activities, on-the-ground research with groups making land-use decisions helps to better understand the socio-cultural context and logic of deforestation. Drawing on a decade of his anthropological research with large-scale cattle ranchers, settlers, and gold miners in the Brazilian Amazon, Hoelle discusses the beliefs, values, and interests that contribute to destructive behaviors. He explores the strategies that these groups use to elude government surveillance and deforestation regulations, and sheds light on some of the ongoing challenges to more sustainable and just land uses in Amazonia.