Critical Scholarship & Practice in Conservation & Development
FES 759, Spring 2003
Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies
Associate Professor, Critical & Creative Thinking Program, Graduate College of Education, U. Mass. Boston
Adjunct Professor, Environmental, Coastal and Ocean Sciences Department
email@example.com; phone messages via TA (below) or Ann Prokop (432-6216)
Course website: http://www.faculty.umb.edu/peter_taylor/759-03.html
Course meeting time: Tuesday 2.30-5.20 (Sage Rm. 32) Starts Jan. 14th., ends Apr. 29th. Spring break: Mar 11 & 18. No class Apr. 22nd.
Office hours: Tuesday 1.30-2.20 in 301 Prospect, Rm. 101; 5.30-6.20 in Sage Rm. 32
Email "office hours": Monday & Thursday 7.30-9am
TA: Keely Maxwell; firstname.lastname@example.org; 436-4449; 210 Prospect, #103
Advanced seminar and workshop for students interested in research, policy, and participation in issues of Conservation and Development. Students critically review literature on selected topics at the same time as learning new approaches for developing their own writing and supporting others to write. These two strands of the course will be linked through attention to the challenges for individuals participating in collaborative endeavors. This emphasis, in turn, is woven into a broader examination of the tension between simple and complex accounts of environmental and social change, which includes the tension between, on one hand, a traditional natural or social scientific focus on the situation studied and, on the other hand, interpretations that encompass the social fields in which researchers produce what counts as knowledge. Working within this framework, the wide range of readings for the course is designed to provide analytical tools to advanced students to deal with conceptual challenges that span all areas of social science.
Prerequisites: One or more of the MEM Social Science core courses (FES 565, 747, 757, 839, or 908). Interested students should submit to the instructor by email a paragraph about why the course interests or is relevant to you, including how you meet the prerequisites, by Jan. 21st.
Enrollment cap: To achieve the desired level of interaction in class, writing, and commentary, enrollment will be capped at 12 students and thus may have to be restricted. Preference will be given to 2nd-year Masters students and Doctoral students. Permission to enrol will be given by Jan. 22nd.
List of Topics
1. (1/14) Introduction to a) the idea of "interesecting processes" and b) the course as a vehicle to advance your critical writing about conservation and development
2. (1/21) Introduction to a) the instructor's emerging framework for making sense of complexity in environment and development, using "the population problem" as a case, and b) the course as a community of writers
3. (1/28) Changing accounts of people, animals, and the African environment
4. (2/4) Models of nomads and situated modelers
5. (2/11) Discourses of self-interested individuals, incl. the tragedy of the commons
6. (2/18) Adapted human ecologies based on local knowledge: adapted, flexible, or vulnerable?
7. (2/25) Work-in-progress Presentations on Student Papers
8. (3/4) Construction of commodities and the gendered politics of production in agroecology
9. (3/25) The politics of participation in eco-development
10. (4/1) Conservation and early C20 colonialism, patriarchy, and eugenics
11. (4/8) The collaborative generation of environmental knowledge and inquiry
12. (4/15) Euro-centric environmentalism and coercive conservation
13. (4/29) Looking back; looking forward: Strategic personal planning workshop
Packets of photocopied readings from week 3 onwards -- order from Science Park Copy Center, 230-4910, and pick up 24 hours later at School of Management Copy Center, room B-62 at 135 Prospect St.. (One set will be on reserve in Sage Hall library)
Recommended: #Elbow, P. (1981). Writing with Power. New York: Oxford University Press.
(Readings marked # are available on reserve.)
A. Project: Paper for publication, research prospectus, or funding proposal related to your research (4500 words), preceded by initial description, bibliography, work-in-progress presentation, and complete draft -- 40%
(See list of papers)
B. Responses to Readings in relation to your project (minimum of 4), including leading discussion (1 or 2 times depending on course enrollment) -- 20% (discussion leading schedule)
C. Prepared participation and attendance at class meetings -- 20%
D. Summary sheet on research organization submitted week 5 & at the end -- 5%
E. Minimum of two in-office or phone conferences on your project, by weeks 4 and 10 -- 5% (appointment schedule)
F. Peer commentaries on other students' drafts -- 10%
G. (Optional bonus) Bibliography & rationale for supplementary or updated weeks for syllabus -- 10% (See Course Notes for some possibilities)
Schedule of Classes and Readings
Most sessions will have two parts: a) introduction to and discussion of readings; and b) writer's workshop, including introduction to new tools for writing and collaborating. Handouts will be provided (and/or posted on the course website) describing both kinds of activities for the week.
1. Introduction to a) the idea of "interesecting processes" and b) the course as a vehicle to advance your critical writing about conservation and development
Pearce, F. (2000). "Inventing Africa." New Scientist(12 August): 30-33.
#Taylor, P. J. (1999). "Mapping the complexity of social-natural processes: Cases from Mexico and Africa," in F. Fischer and M. Hajer (Eds.), Living with Nature: Environmental Discourse as Cultural Critique. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 121-125 (excerpt on "intersecting processes")
worksheet from week 1
2. Introduction to a) the instructor's emerging framework for making sense of complexity in environment and development, using "the population problem" as a case, and b) the course as a community of writers
guidesheet for week 2
Taylor, P. J. "How do we know there is a population-environment problem?--A conversation"(on-line version)
Taylor, P. J. "Reasoned Understandings and Social Change in Research on Common Resources--Introducing a Framework to Keep Tensions Active, Productive, and Ever-Present"(download)
#Taylor, P. J. and R. García-Barrios (1995). "The social analysis of ecological change: From systems to intersecting processes." Social Science Information 34(1): 5-30.
This framework begins from research in enviroment and development, which opens up sociological interpretation of what researchers actually do in making their science. This, in turn, opens up questions about how researchers could reflect on the complexity of their social situatedness in ways that enhance their studies of the complexity of ecological and enviromental situations. By the end tensions in the ways researchers address complexity have been exposed, which run through the topics in the weeks ahead:
* simple vs complex accounts (easily communicated with appearances of generality vs. attention required for particular detail)
* traditional scientific focus on the situation studied vs. systematic attention to the social fields in which researchers produce what counts as knowledge
* individual research, knowledge, and meaning vs. collaborative production and application of knowledge by diverse practitioners/agents
b) Writer's workshop
Elbow, Writing with Power, chaps. 2, 3, 13
Elbow, varieties of modes of feedback
Legendre, B. (n.d.). Exploring your writing preferences, Cornell University Writing Workshop. (download)
Thomashow, M. (1995). Ecological Identity: Becoming a Reflective Environmentalist. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 193-199 (excerpt on sense of place map)
3. Changing accounts of people, animals, and the African environment
guidesheet for week 3
#Leach, M. and R. Mearns (1996). "Environmental change and policy: Challenging received wisdom in Africa," in M. Leach and R. Mearns (Eds.), The Lie of the Land: Challenging Received Wisdom on the African Environment. Portsmouth, N.H.: Heinemann, 1-33.#
#Fairhead, J. and M. Leach (1996). "Rethinking the forest-savanna mosaic: Colonial science and its relics in West Africa," in M. Leach and R. Mearns (Eds.), The Lie of the Land: Challenging Received Wisdom on the African Environment. Portsmouth, N.H.: Heinemann, 105-121.#
Richards, P. (1983). "Ecological change and the politics of land use." African Studies Review 26: 1-72.
# bibliography on reserve
Writers' workshop: Competencies for computer use and research organization (see guide from instructor's home program; Bibliographical work; Sense-making response to readings
4. Models of nomads and situated modelers
guidesheet for week 4
Coughenour, M., J. Ellis, D. Swift, D. Coppock, K. Galvin, J. McCabe, T. Hart (1985) "Energy extraction and use in a nomadic pastoral ecosystem," Science 230: 619-625.
Ellis, J. and D. Swift. (1989) "Stability of African pastoral ecosystems: Alternate paradigms and implications for development," J. Range Management 41:450-459.
#Little, P. (1988). "Land use conflicts in the agricultural/pastoral borderlands: The case of Kenya," in P. Little, M. Horowitz and A. Nyerges (Eds.), Lands at risk in the third world: Local level perspectives. Boulder: Westview, ed., 195-212.
Picardi, A. and W. Seifert (1976). "A tragedy of the commons in the Sahel," Technology Review May: 42-51.
#Taylor, P. (1992). "Re/constructing socio-ecologies: System dynamics modeling of nomadic pastoralists in sub-Saharan Africa," in A. Clarke and J. Fujimura (Ed.), The Right Tools for the Job: At work in twentieth-century life sciences. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 115-148.
Extra or background readings (on reserve):
# Little, M. A., N. Dyson-Hudson, R. Dyson-Hudson, J. E. Ellis, and D. M. Swift. "Human Biology and the Development of the Ecosystem Approach." In The Ecosystem Approach in Anthropology, ed. E.F. Moran. Boulder: Westview, 1984.
Turner, M. D. (1999). "The role of social networks, indefinite boundaries and political bargaining in maintaining the ecological and economic resiliency of the transhumance systems of Sudano-Sahelian West Africa," in M. Niamir-Fuller (Ed.), Managing Mobility in African Rangelands: The Legitimization of Transhumance. London: Intermediate Technology Publications, 97-123.
Writers' workshop: Buddy writing relationships
5. Discourses of self-interested individuals: the case of the tragedy of the commons
guidesheet for week 5
Berkes, F., D. Feeny, B. McCay & J. Acheson (1989) "The benefits of the commons." Nature 340:91-93.
Hardin, G. (1968). "The Tragedy of the Commons." Science 162: 1243-1248.
Marginson, S. (1988) "The economically rational individual," Arena 84: 105-114.
McCay, B. and S. Jentoft (1998). "Market or community failure? Critical perspectives on common property research." Human Organization 57(1): 21-29.
Ostrom, E. (1990). Governing the Commons: The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1-28.
Peters, P. (1987). "Embedded systems and rooted models: The grazing lands of Botswana and the commons debate," in B. J. McKay and J. M. Acheson (Eds.), The Question of the Commons: The Culture and Ecology of Communal Resources. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 171-194.
Taylor, P. J. (2002). "Non-standard lessons from the "tragedy of the commons"," to appear in M. Maniates (Ed., Empowering Knowledge: Teaching and Learning Global Environmental Politics. Boulder, CO: Rowman & Littlefield.(PDF full text version)
Extra or background readings (on reserve):
# Fortmann, L. and B. McCay, eds. (1996). "Voices from the Commons." Cultural Survival Quarterly 20(1). (# on reserve in Kline science library)
Writers' workshop: Sharing of work/progress to date; supportive listening
Weeks 6 & 7 switched from original syllabus
6. Adapted human ecologies based on local knowledge: adapted, flexible, or vulnerable?
guidesheet for week 7
Brosius, J. P. (1997). "Endangered forest, endangered people: Environmentalist representations of indigenous knowledge." Human Ecology 25(1): 47-69.
Dove, M. R. (1996). "Process Versus Product in Bornean Augury: A Traditional Knowledge System's Solution to the Problem of Knowing," in R. Ellen and K. Fukui (Eds.), Redefining Nature: Ecology, Culture and Domestication. Oxford: Berg Publishers, 557-596.
O'Hara, S., F. A. Street-Perrott and T. P. Burt (1993). "Accelerated soil erosion around a Mexican highland lake caused by prehispanic agriculture." Nature 362(4 Mar.): 48-51.
Rocheleau, D. (1991). "Gender, ecology and the science of survival: Stories and lessons from Kenya." Agriculture and Human Values 8(1): 156-165.
# Toledo, V. (1990) "The ecological rationality of peasant production," in ed. Altieri, M. and S. Hecht, Agroecology and small farm development. Boca Raton; CRC Press, 53-60.
Watts, M. J. (1984). "The demise of the moral economy: food & famine," in E. Scott (Ed.), Life Before the Drought. Boston, MA: Allen & Irwin, 124-148.
Writers' workshop: Preparation for work-in-progress presentations
7. Work-in-progress Presentations on Student Papers
When you prepare to give a presentations, when you hear yourselves speak your presentations, and when you get feedback, it usually leads to self-clarification of the overall argument underlying your research and the paper you're writing. This, in turn, influences your research priorities for the remaining time. These presentations will necessarily be on work-in-progress, so you'll have to indicate where additional research is needed and where you think it might lead you.
guidesheet for writing after week 7
(See list of papers)
8. Construction of commodities and the gendered politics of production in agroecology.
guidesheet for week 8
Carney, J. and M. Watts (1991). "Disciplining women? Rice, mechanization, and the evolution of Mandinka gender relations in Senegambia." Signs 16(4): 651-681.
Leach, M. (1992). "Gender and the environment: Traps and opportunities." Development in Practice 2(1): 12-22.
Schroeder, R. (1993). "Shady practice: Gender and the political ecology of resource stabilization in Gambian garden/ orchards." Economic Geography
Wolf, E. (1982). "The Movement of Commodities," in Europe and the People Without History. Berkeley: University of California, 326-329.
Extra or background readings (on reserve):
# Mackenzie, F. (1991). "Political economy of the environment, gender and resistance under colonialism: Murnag'a District, Kenya 1910-1950." Canadian Journal of African Studies 25(2): 226-256.
# Rowling, N. (1987). "Introduction," in Commodities: How the world was taken to market. London: Free Assoc Books, 7-21.
Writers' workshop: a. reconstructing the writer's narrative & b. Planning to meet objectives other than deadlines
9. The politics of participation in eco-development
guidesheet for week 9
Agrawal, A. (1998). Community-in-conservation: Beyond enchantment and disenchantment. Gainesville, FL: Conservation and Development Forum Discussion Paper.
Brosius, P. et al. (1998). "Representing communities: Histories and politics of community-based natural resource management." Society and Natural Resources 11: 157-168.
Ribot, J. (1995). "From exclusion to participation: Turning Senegal's forest policy around." World development 23(9): 1587-1599.
Ribot, J. (1999). "Decentralization, participation and accountability in Sahelian forestry: Legal instruments of political-administrative control." Africa 69(1): 23-65.
Taylor, P. J. (2002). Excerpt from "'Whose trees are these?' Bridging the divide between subjects and outsider-researchers," in R. Eglash and G. DiChiro (Eds.), Appropriating Technology: Vernacular Science and Social Power. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
Extra or background readings (on reserve):
# Peters, P. (1996). "'Who's local here?' The politics of participation in development." Cultural Survival Quarterly 20(3): 22-60.(# on reserve in Kline science library)
Writers' workshop: Peer commentary on outlines and drafts: reconstructing the author's narrative
10. Conservation and early C20 colonialism, patriarchy, and eugenics
guidesheet for week 10
#Akeley, C. (1923). "Is the Gorilla Almost a Man?," in In Brightest Africa. New York, Garden City Publishing Co., 236-267.
Beinart, W. (1990). "Empire, Hunting, and Ecological Change in Southern and Central Africa," Past and Present 128: 162-186.
Haraway, D. (1989). "Teddy bear patriarchy: Taxidermy in the garden of Eden, New York City, 1908-1936," in Primate visions: Gender, race, and nature in the world of modern sciences. New York, Routledge, 26-58.
#Osburn, H. F. (1923). "Foreword," to C. Akeley, In Brightest Africa. New York, Garden City Publishing Co., ix-xii.
Ranger, T. (1989). "Whose Heritage? The Case of The Matobo National Park." Journal of Southern African Studies 15: 217-249.
#Roosevelt, T. (1905). "National duties," in The strenuous life. New York, The Century Co., 279-297.
Writers' workshop: Re-envisioning; Reverse outlining
11. The collaborative generation of environmental knowledge and inquiry
guidesheet for week 11
#Stanfield, B. (1997). "Citizen analysis: Discerning the signs of the times," in J. Burbidge (Ed.), Beyond Prince and Merchant: Citizen Participation and the Rise of Civil Society. New York: Pact Publications, 167-182, 293-294.
Gunderson, L. H., C. S. Holling and S. S. Light (1995). "Barriers broken and bridges built: A synthesis," in L. H. Gunderson, C. S. Holling and S. S. Light (Eds.), Barriers and Bridges to the Renewal of Ecosystems and Institutions. New York: Columbia University Press, 489-532.
Holling, C. S. (1995). "What barriers? What bridges?," in L. H. Gunderson, C. S. Holling and S. S. Light (Eds.), Barriers and Bridges to the Renewal of Ecosystems and Institutions. New York: Columbia University Press,
Taylor, P. J. (1990) "Mapping ecologists' ecologies of knowledge," Philosophy of Science 1990, Vol. 2: 95-109.
Taylor, P. J. (2002). "We know more than we are, at first, prepared to acknowledge: Journeying to develop critical thinking." Pedagogy, Pluralism, and Practice under review.(on-line version)
Taylor, P. J. (ms.) "Generating environmental knowledge and inquiry through workshop processes"
Extra or background readings (on reserve):
# Wondolleck, J. M. and S. L. Yaffee (2000). Making Collaboration Work: Lessons from Innovation in Natural Resource Management. Washington, DC: Island Press. [selection to be determined]
Writers' workshop: Sense-making contextualization of drafts
12. Euro-centric environmentalism and coercive conservation
guidesheet for week 12
Blaut, J. M. (2000). "Jared Diamond: Euro-environmentalism," in Eight Euro-centric Historians. New York: Guilford, 149-172.
Diamond, J. (1986). "The environmentalist myth." Nature 324(6): 19-20.
DiChiro, G. (2000). "Bearing witness of taking action? Toxic tourism and environmental justice," in R. Hofrichter (Ed.), Reclaiming the Environmental Debate: The Politics of Health in a Toxic Culture. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 275-299.
Guha, R. (2000). "The southern challenge," in Environmentalism: A Global History. New York: Longman, 98-123.
Neumann, R. P. (1995ms). "Designing nature: The national park ideal in socio-historical context."
Peluso, N. (1993). "Coercing conservation: The politics of state resource control." Global Environmental Change 3(2): 199-217.
#Taylor, P. J. and R. García-Barrios (1997). "The dynamics and rhetorics of socio-environmental change: Critical perspectives on the limits of neo-Malthusian environmentalism," in L. Freese (Ed.), Advances in Human Ecology: JAI. Vol.6.
Writers' workshop: Peer commentary on complete drafts: 1) the author's "GOSP" and 2) general commentary
13. Looking back; looking forward: Strategic personal planning workshop
guidesheet for week 13
Writers' workshop: Strategic personal planning
Stanfield, R. B. (2002). "excerpts," in The Workshop Book: From Individual Creativity to Group Action. Toronto: Canadian Institute of Cultural Affairs, 142-144, 151-154, 159-162.
Course evaluation. ( Paragraph overviews written as part of a narrative evaluation)