Nostalgia for la montana: The production of landscape at the frontier of chilean commercial forestry

Manuschevich, Daniela; Gurr, Mel; Ramirez-Pascualli, Carlos A.


Chile has a well-documented structural dependence upon resource extraction, yet less is known about the social and symbolic significance of the environmental changes related to such a dependence. Since 1973, Chile's timber plantation complex increased nearly seven-fold in terms of area, prompting deep socioecological transformations in the countryside. In this paper, we focus on the workings of memory and nostalgia among peasant farmers living at the fringes of tree-farm expansion. Based on qualitative research and participatory mapping in three mountainous villages, our main argument focuses on the affective dimensions of land use change, particularly that nostalgia resists the symbolic reproduction of monocultures, while its absence seems to accept tree farms as an unescapable, unfolding process. We characterize three peasant categories of landscape: la montana (native forest), el monte (successional forest), and el bosque (timber plantations). The peasants' use of the words montana and bosque is of particular interest, as it counters the false discursive equivalence between timber plantations and forests that has been adopted by forestry and climate-change policymakers alike. Our case provides an in-depth analysis of the ways rural dwellers inhabit monocultured landscape, entangled with memories and emotions. Paying attention to gendered and intergenerational dynamics, as timber farm expansion has taken place over the last forty years, our results have the potential to inform ongoing discussion of mitigation policies based on global afforestation in the Global South.

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Título según WOS: Nostalgia for la montana: The production of landscape at the frontier of chilean commercial forestry
Título de la Revista: JOURNAL OF RURAL STUDIES
Volumen: 80
Fecha de publicación: 2020
Página de inicio: 211
Página final: 221


Notas: ISI