Informations et ressources scientifiques
sur le développement des zones arides et semi-arides

Accueil du site → Doctorat → Australie → 2009 → Flood country : floods in the Murray and Darling River systems, 1850 to the present

Australian National University (2009)

Flood country : floods in the Murray and Darling River systems, 1850 to the present

O’Gorman, Emily

Titre : Flood country : floods in the Murray and Darling River systems, 1850 to the present

Auteur : O’Gorman, Emily

Université de soutenance : Australian National University

Grade : Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) 2009

Description
In the region of drought-dominated inland eastern Australia now known as the MurrayDarling Basin, floods occupy a special status. Although relatively infrequent, they are crucial sources of water for people, animals, and plants. They drive hydrology in the region, supplying most of the surface and ground water. Floods are often transformative events for people as well as the non-human environment. This thesis explores Australian settlers’ changing relationships with, and understandings of, the rivers and floodplains of the Murray and Darling river systems from 1850 to the present. It analyses floods in terms of the two dominant roles that they have played in settler history in the Murray and Darling river systems : as ’natural disasters’ and as part of the wider hydrology of rivers. Four key flood events are closely examined. The selected flood episodes - 1852, 1890, 1956, and 1990 - . illuminate changing ways of knowing and managing rivers, floods, and floodplains over a century and a half, and some of the long-term consequences for people, rivers, and ecologies. Analysis is also anchored in an examination of a number of themes : regional tension with centralised governments over decision-making processes ; the particular forms of river management that centralised government enables (such as largescale riverine engineering) ; different kinds of knowledge of the rivers, especially regional (or local) knowledge, scientific knowledge, and government (and managerial) knowledge ; tensions and cooperation between the custodians of these different kinds of understanding ; and the emergence of the Murray-Darling Basin as a managerial unit. The thesis aims to present a ’floods-eye-view’ of the history of the area (and, partly, of Australia) and explore the ways that settlers, the rivers, and the floods have re-made each other.

Présentation

Version intégrale (104 Mb)

Page publiée le 25 janvier 2021