Oficina de Ecologia e Sociedade

Reading Group | Political Ecology Reading Group (2020-2021)

«Subsistence in the Plantationocene: Dooryard gardens, agrobiodiversity, and the subaltern economies of slavery» by Judith Carney

April 9, 2021, 14h30 (GMT +01:00)

Online

Discussant: Joana Vaz Sousa (CES


Overview

The expansion of monocultures across New World tropical landscapes threatens an Afrodescendant smallholder farming system that has long prioritized agrobiodiversity and agroecological practices. These practices emerged during the plantation era, when slaves leveraged subsistence precarity for the right to food plots, independent production, and partial autonomy over their labor. Historical continuities connect this subaltern food system to the agricultural repertoires maintained by present-day Afrodescendant smallholders. The landscapes that collectively embody the plants, practical and cultural knowledge, and social memories held by these communities are recognizable as bio-cultural refugia, extending to the New World tropics a concept validating European heritage landscapes.

This seminar is part of the Political Ecology Reading Group series 2020-21 of the Oficina de Ecologia e Sociedade (CES). If you wish to receive a copy of this paper, please contact ecosoc@ces.uc.pt

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