Water, Place and Community: An Ethnography of Environmental Engagement, Emplaced Identity and the Traveston Crossing Dam Dispute in Queensland, Australia

Kim De Rijke (2012). Water, Place and Community: An Ethnography of Environmental Engagement, Emplaced Identity and the Traveston Crossing Dam Dispute in Queensland, Australia PhD Thesis, School of Social Science, The University of Queensland.

       
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Author Kim De Rijke
Thesis Title Water, Place and Community: An Ethnography of Environmental Engagement, Emplaced Identity and the Traveston Crossing Dam Dispute in Queensland, Australia
School, Centre or Institute School of Social Science
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2012-02
Thesis type PhD Thesis
Supervisor Prof. David Trigger
Dr. Sarinda Singh
Total pages 249
Total colour pages 38
Total black and white pages 211
Language eng
Subjects 16 Studies in Human Society
Abstract/Summary As one of the driest countries in the world, the supply of water for human consumption, food production and environmental purposes is of increasing concern to Australia. This thesis seeks to address the socio-cultural issues associated with a particular initiative by the Queensland State Government in 2006 to dam the Mary River in southeast Queensland. The so-called Traveston Crossing Dam was aimed, among other things, at providing additional drinking water for the city of Brisbane, which was by then effectively running out of water. The dam would inundate a large area of agricultural land upstream from the proposed dam site and would displace hundreds of families. This ethnography seeks to address the dispute that erupted as a result of the proposal, and it attempts to understand this dispute particularly in terms of local environmental engagements, emplaced identity and the symbolic politics of community. To provide insights into the region at the time of the dam announcement, I start with an environmental and social history of the region, followed by a detailed discussion of the anti-dam campaign. Drawing on anthropological concepts of community and identity politics, I describe how a sense of community was forged in this area despite significant local diversity. I subsequently turn to the role of epistemology in the negotiation of community identity. Strategic engagements with science and the role of embodied experience are drawn upon to analyse the ways in which trust and the validity of knowledge were negotiated. I further draw on the analytical concepts of endogenous and exogenous identity to distinguish between different ways of knowing nature and related senses of emplacement. These concepts are particularly drawn upon in the final parts of the thesis, which attempt to understand the dam dispute by contrasting exogenous knowledge of the environment, developed often as abstract scientific and management models, with the ways in which local emplaced identities have emerged through practical, embodied environmental engagement, including naming practices. Through such contrasting relationships with the land and the river, and the mutually constitutive aspects of identity, practice and epistemology, this thesis seeks to address the socio-cultural aspects of a dispute surrounding a natural resource extraction project.
Keyword environmental anthropology, dams, conflict, environmental campaign, place and identity, epistemology, ethnography, water
Additional Notes 18,19,20,22,26,27,42,59,71,86,91,97,105,124,128,130,131,132,135,137,140,147,150,162,164,168,172,177,178,181,182,187,188,195,207,208,209,246

 
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Created: Mon, 27 Feb 2012, 13:43:36 EST by Mr Kim De Rijke on behalf of Library - Information Access Service