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Environmental Politics and Liberation in Contemporary Africa

Series: Environment & Policy Volume: 18

By: Mohamed MA Salih


Hardback | Dec 1999 | #101321 | ISBN: 0792356527
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NHBS Price: £126.50 $163/€139 approx

About this book

This book is the first of its kind to explore the intricate relationship between liberation movements and environmental struggles in contemporary Africa. It is premised on the question why some movements are called `environmental' and others `liberation'. What socioeconomic and political circumstances lead to the making or dissipation of such distinctions? Common among African liberation movements is the promise to offer alternative political order and livlelihood possibilities. The prominence of the environment (land, water, forests, oil, minerals, etc.) in the political objectives of most African liberation movements leads Salih to argue that in Africa - as well, probably, as in other developing countries - the distinction between environmental and liberation struggles is apparently superfluous. Liberation, in this broader perspective, therefore offers and all-encompassing emancipatory political potential that transcends the environment to include the laudable quest to transform the state and the authoritarian institutions of government that sustain it. The book also explains the role of local/international NGO partnerships with African liberation movements in extending humanitarian as well as advocacy support to the victims of state oppression.

'The book is well worth reading as it offers a surprising insight in two fields of political struggles that were long treated as separate issues. For geographers it shows promising vistas of the combination of political geography and environmental geography, embedded in the social sciences in general.' Tijdschrift voor Econimsche en Sociale Geographie, 91:3 (2000)


Foreword. Preface. Maps. 1. Introduction. 2. Land Alienation and Environmental Insecurity. 3. Displacement by Authoritarian Development. 4. Nuba and Ogoni: Genocide in a Shrinking Environmental Space. 5. Hadendowa and Fulani: 'Resourcing' Identity Politics. 6. Oromo and Dinka: Conflating Environmental and Liberation Struggle. 7. REST: Post-war Reconstruction and Environmental Rehabilitation. 8. NGOs, Environment and Liberation: The Global-Local Nexus. 9. Conclusion. Bibliography. Index.

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