Contested Global Landscapes

A Multidisciplinary Initiative of the Cornell Institute for the Social Sciences

Protestors against dams in India

by Kathleen Sexsmith

Although scholars on the Politics of Land Deals: Regional Perspectives panel on Oct 17th presented perspectives from disparate locations across the globe, their findings presented a number of commonalities in the ways these processes are taking place – and being resisted.

The violent and coercive role of the state in the dispossession of agricultural producers in India and Ecuador was well documented by Michael Levien (Michael's paper - pdf) and Juli Hazlewood respectively. The recently retooled Ecuadorian Constitution – internationally hailed as a means of restoring the rights of nature and the social-nature metabolism – is paradoxically providing a constitutional means for the potential use of military force against resisters, by placing rights to “ecological services” in the hands of the government.

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