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On Arid Ground - Political Ecologies of Empire in Russian Central Asia

Oxford University Press

Titre : On Arid Ground - Political Ecologies of Empire in Russian Central Asia

*The first comprehensive study of broad-based environmental change in imperial Central Asia
* Uses the frame of political ecology to uncover the social, economic, and political capital located in nature by state actors, Central Asian communities, imperial settlers, and Slavic peasant migrants
* Offers new perspectives on the functions and dysfunctions of Russian imperial rule
* Draws on a wide range of archival and published sources, including maps, exhibitions, state correspondence, telegrams, petitions, epic poems, scientific surveys, periodicals, newspapers, and more
* Emphasises the importance of scale, connection, synchronicity, and both discursive and physical action in understanding environmental change

Auteur (s) : Jennifer Keating
Publisher  : Oxford University Press
Date de parution : 14 April 2022
Pages : 372

On Arid Ground focuses on the relationships between empire and environment in Central Asia, using environmental history to examine the practice of Russian imperialism in Turkestan at the end of empire, from the 1860s until 1916. It reveals for the first time a comprehensive assessment of the environmental imprint of Russian colonisation, and shows how local ecologies fitted into broader repertoires of imperial rule, accommodation, and resistance. Ranging widely above and below the surface in Turkestan, from the deserts of Transcaspia to the highlands and lowlands of rural Fergana and Semirech’e, Jennifer Keating explores infrastructure development, migrant settlement, land reclamation and dispossession, the commodification of nature, and environmental violence to reveal the ways in which ecological change was central to the building and breaking of empire. Attentive to connections, synchronicities and scale, On Arid Ground makes the case for looking beyond cotton and water in Central Asian context, for the powerful material role played by animals and plants, sand, silt, and salt in human histories, and for the less visible relationships between far-flung people and things within and beyond Turkestan’s borders. Laying bare the political roots and repercussions of environmental change, the volume brings fresh perspectives both to the history of Central Asia and to that of the wider Russian empire across Eurasia.

Présentation : site de l’éditeur

Page publiée le 3 avril 2022