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Ecuador

Women’s Organizing against Extractivism: Towards a Decolonial Multi-Sited Analysis

Citation:

Caretta, Martina Angela, Sofia Zaragocin, Bethani Turley, and Kamila Torres Orellana. 2020. “Women’s Organizing against Extractivism: Towards a Decolonial Multi-Sited Analysis.” Human Geography 13 (1): 49–59.

Authors: Martina Angela Caretta, Sofia Zaragocin, Bethani Turley, Kamila Torres Orellana

Abstract:

ENGLISH ABSTRACT:
In Anglophone geography, proposals have called for the decolonization of geographical knowledge production to be focused on tangible and material manifestations of how dialogue is initiated and mediated among different ontologies and epistemologies. We strive to respond to this call by empirically cutting across the American continent to highlight the embodied and transnational dimensions of natural resource extraction. Across the Americas, extractive industries’ water usage often brings corporations into prolonged conflicts with local communities, who mobilize to resist the initiation and/or expansion of extractive activities that they view as threatening to their health, way of life, and their families and communities’ territories. Through two case studies from West Virginia (WV), USA, and Cuenca, Ecuador, we propose an analytical framework capturing how women organize against the extractive industry as a result of embodied water pollution. We do this with the aim of decolonizing geographical knowledge production, as we propose a decolonial, multi-sited analytical approach, which serves to rethink the scale of effects of extractive industry. By showing how resource extraction affects women’s bodies and water while also effectively allowing us to compare and contrast embodied water relations in WV and Ecuador, we better understand how extractivism works across scales—the body, the environment, and transnationally. We contend that a multi-sited approach disrupts the North–South geographical discursive divide and furthers a decolonial geographical approach in making apparent the embodied production and lived experience of territory across various scales. In this piece, we promote debates on decoloniality within Anglophone geography by proposing that we must not only consider epistemologies and spatial ontologies outside the western canon, but engage with practices and theories occurring in different parts of the globe in a simultaneous fashion as well. We call on fellow geographers to do the same.

SPANISH ABSTRACT:
En la geografía anglófona, las propuestas han pedido que la descolonización de la producción de conocimiento geográfico se centre en manifestaciones tangibles y materiales de cómo se inicia y media el diálogo entre las diferentes ontologías y epistemologías. Nos esforzamos por responder a este llamado cortando empíricamente a través del continente americano para resaltar las dimensiones encarnadas y transnacionales de la extracción de recursos naturales. En todo el continente americano, el uso del agua de las industrias extractivas a menudo lleva a las empresas a conflictos prolongados con las comunidades locales, que se movilizan para resistir el inicio y / o la expansión de actividades extractivas que consideran amenazadoras para su salud, formas de vida y sus familias y los territorios de sus comunidades. A través de dos estudios de caso de West Virginia (WV), EE. UU. y Cuenca, Ecuador, proponemos un marco analítico que muestra cómo las mujeres se organizan contra la industria extractiva como resultado de la contaminación del agua. Hacemos esto con el objetivo de descolonizar la producción de conocimiento geográfico, ya que proponemos un enfoque analítico descolonial y de múltiples ubicaciones, que sirve para repensar la escala de efectos de la industria extractiva. Al mostrar cómo la extracción de recursos afecta los cuerpos y el agua de las mujeres y, al mismo tiempo, comparar y contrastar de manera efectiva las relaciones hídricas incorporadas en VM y Ecuador, comprendemos mejor cómo funciona el extractivismo en diferentes escalas: el cuerpo, el medio ambiente y transnacionalmente. Sostenemos que un enfoque de múltiples ubicaciones interrumpe la división discursiva geográfica Norte-Sur y promueve un enfoque geográfico descolonial al hacer evidente la producción encarnada y la experiencia vivida del territorio a varias escalas. En este artículo, promovemos debates sobre la descolonialidad dentro de la geografía anglófona al proponer que no solo debemos considerar las epistemologías y las ontologías espaciales fuera del canon occidental, sino también involucrarnos en prácticas y teorías que ocurren en diferentes partes del mundo de manera simultánea. Hacemos un llamado a otros geógrafos para que hagan lo mismo.

Keywords: Ecuador, extractivism, decoloniality, West Virginia, women, extractivismo, Mujeres, descolonialidad, Virginia Occidental

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Environment, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Health, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation Regions: Americas, North America, South America Countries: Ecuador, United States of America

Year: 2020

Patriarchy and Progressive Politics: Gendered Resistance to Mining through Everyday Social Relations of State Formation in Intag, Ecuador

Citation:

Billo, Emily. 2020. “Patriarchy and Progressive Politics: Gendered Resistance to Mining through Everyday Social Relations of State Formation in Intag, Ecuador.” Human Geography 13 (1): 16–26.

Author: Emily Billo

Abstract:

ENGLISH ABSTRACT:
Over the last decade, the Ecuadorian government, following regional trends, called for social and environmental progress through state-controlled resource extraction. Scholars have demonstrated that this neo-extractive model warranted further investigation regarding its progressive aims. Specifically, this paper examines gendered critiques of state-led extractivism linked to expanding governmental and social programs. Even as women asserted their political recognition and rights in state politics, they still confronted patriarchal relations in their everyday lives. Drawing on eight months of ethnographic research over 6 years in campesino communities of Junín and Chalguayacu Alto, I argue that women in Intag challenged patriarchal state relations of extractive capitalism. This paper offers a novel contribution to literature on neo-extractivism and gendered forms of resistance. Women held the state accountable for its promises of social welfare and infrastructural development through which it generated public support for controversial mineral projects. These symbols of state paternalism revealed expanded patriarchal structures that underpinned their daily lives, with significance for a gendered politics of resistance.

SPANISH ABSTRACT:
Durante la última década, el gobierno ecuatoriano, siguiendo las tendencias regionales, pidió progreso social y ambiental a través de la extracción de recursos controlada por el estado. Los académicos han demostrado que este modelo neoextractivo justificaba una mayor investigación sobre sus objetivos progresivos. Específicamente, este artículo examina las críticas de género del extractivismo dirigido por el estado y vinculado a la expansión de los programas gubernamentales y sociales. Aun cuando las mujeres afirmaron su reconocimiento político y sus derechos en la política estatal, siguieron confrontando las relaciones patriarcales en sus vidas cotidianas. Basándome en ocho meses de investigación etnográfica durante seis años en comunidades campesinas de Junín y Chalguayacu Alto, sostengo que las mujeres en Intag desafiaron las relaciones estatales patriarcales del capitalismo extractivo. Este artículo ofrece una novedosa contribución a la literatura sobre neo-extractivismo y formas de resistencia de género. Las mujeres responsabilizaron al estado por sus promesas de bienestar social y desarrollo de infraestructura a través de las cuales generó apoyo público para proyectos minerales controvertidos. Estos símbolos del paternalismo estatal revelaron estructuras patriarcales expandidas que apuntalaron sus vidas cotidianas, con importancia para una política de resistencia de género.

Keywords: Ecuador, gendered resistance, neo-extraction, patriarchy, social reproduction, resistencia de género, patriarcado, reproducción social, neoextraccíon

Topics: Environment, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Governance Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Ecuador

Year: 2020

Climate Change, Buen Vivir, and the Dialectic of Enlightenment: Toward a Feminist Critical Philosophy of Climate Justice

Citation:

Cochrane, Regina. 2014. “Climate Change, Buen Vivir, and the Dialectic of Enlightenment: Toward a Feminist Critical Philosophy of Climate Justice.” Hypatia 29 (3): 576–98.

Author: Regina Cochrane

Abstract:

This paper examines the proposal that the indigenous cosmovision of buen vivir (good living)—the “organizing principle” of Ecuador's 2008 and Bolivia's 2009 constitutional reforms—constitutes an appropriate basis for responding to climate change. Advocates of this approach blame climate change on a “civilizational crisis” that is fundamentally a crisis of modern Enlightenment reason. Certain Latin American feminists and indigenous women, however, question the implications, for women, of any proposed “civilizational shift” seeking to reverse the human separation from nonhuman nature wrought via Enlightenment's “disenchantment of nature.” The paper argues that, in order to adequately address both the climate crisis and feminist concerns about buen vivir, a different critique of Enlightenment modernity is necessary—one drawing on Adorno's philosophy of negative dialectics and on Adorno and Horkheimer's nonidentitarian dialectical understanding of Enlightenment. Conceiving Enlightenment as composed of nonsublatable moments of domination and liberation, Adorno and Horkheimer call for a rational critique of reason and for affinity rather than identity with nonhuman nature. The paper ends with a brief discussion of how feminist critiques of buen vivir and approaches to climate justice can be furthered via an engagement with an environmental feminist philosophy informed by a negative dialectical approach to Enlightenment.

Topics: Environment, Climate Change, Feminisms, Indigenous, Indigenous Knowledge Systems Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Bolivia, Ecuador

Year: 2014

Agroecological Practices as a Climate Change Adaptation Mechanism in Four Highland Communities in Eduador

Citation:

Cáceres-Arteage, Natali, Maria K. Bachman, and Jason D. Lane. 2020. “Agroecological Practices as a a Climate Change Adaptation Mechanism in Four Highland Communities in Ecuador.” Journal of Latin American Geography 19 (3): 47-73.

Authors: Natali Cáceres-Arteaga, Maria K. Bachman, Jason D. Lane

Abstract:

Recently, public programs in highland Ecuador have promoted agroecology as an adaptation mechanism to climate change. Agroecology has been well studied in terms of its ability to increase food sovereignty, agricultural productivity, and community well-being. The effects of agroecological practices on environmental and socioeconomic conditions, however, have received little attention. This paper examines the different experiences of men and women in several Andean communities in Pedro Moncayo, Ecuador, focusing on their reaction to the changes seen in their communities due to the use of agroecological practices. Using qualitative and quantitative methods, this study shows that agroecology is a meaningful intervention for these communities. Farmers perceive agroecological practices as culturally relevant approaches to agriculture that respond to a variety of specific environmental concerns. Agroecology also challenges the gendered dimensions of traditional agriculture in highland Ecuador, providing women with a welcome mechanism to ensure the health of their families as well as their own personal development. The possibility of generating and controlling income has improved self-esteem in women, while also empowering them to make decisions inside the family, participate in community organizations, and assume leadership roles. This transition of women from private to public spaces is a major step toward gender equality, and it simultaneously indicates that adaptive capacity to climate change has increased. The study thus concludes that a meaningful program to improve climate change adaptation also has the potential to challenge traditional gender inequities and improve socioeconomic conditions for rural communities.

Keywords: climate change, agroecology, Ecuador, gender

Topics: Agriculture, Environment, Climate Change, Gender, Men, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Health, Indigenous Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Ecuador

Year: 2020

Gender, Natural Capital, and Migration in the Southern Ecuadorian Andes

Citation:

Gray, Clark L. 2010. “Gender, Natural Capital, and Migration in the Southern Ecuadorian Andes.” Environment and Planning A: Economy and Space 42 (3): 678–96.

Author: Clark L. Gray

Abstract:

This paper investigates the roles of gender and natural capital (defined as land and associated environmental services) in out-migration from a rural study area in the southern Ecuadorian Andes. Drawing on original household survey data, I construct and compare multivariate event history models of individual-level, household-level, and community-level influences on the migration of men and women. The results undermine common assumptions that landlessness and environmental degradation universally contribute to out-migration. Instead, men access land resources to facilitate international migration and women are less likely to depart from environmentally marginal communities relative to other areas. These results reflect a significantly gendered migration system in which natural capital plays an important but unexpected role.

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Migration, Environment, Climate Change, Gender, Households, Land Tenure Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Ecuador

Year: 2010

Gendering Indigenous Subjects: An Institutional Ethnography of Corporate Social Responsibility in Ecuador

Citation:

Billo, Emily. 2020. “Gendering Indigenous Subjects: An Institutional Ethnography of Corporate Social Responsibility in Ecuador.” Gender, Place & Culture 27 (8): 1134–54.

Author: Emily Billo

Abstract:

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs are institutions of governance and development designed to respond to socio-ecological impacts of resource extraction. I argue that CSR programs are an overlooked tool of the neoliberal project of gendered indigenous subject formation in Ecuador. The article contributes to feminist political ecology through its use of institutional ethnography, a feminist methodology. It advances feminist commitments to everyday, embodied analyses of resource struggles, illustrating how gender and indigeneity are intersectional subjectivities provoked by the socio-spatial relationships of CSR programs. Postcolonial intersectional analysis of CSR programs demonstrates how power expands through gender and indigeneity contributing to indigenous women’s ongoing marginalization in Ecuador.

Keywords: corporate social responsibility, Ecuador, gendered indigenous subjects, institutional ethnography, resource governance

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Development, Extractive Industries, Feminisms, Feminist Political Ecology, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Governance, Indigenous, Intersectionality Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Ecuador

Year: 2020

Women's Participation in Green Growth - A Potential Fully Realised?

Citation:

Von Hagen, Markéta, and Johanna Willems. 2012. "Women's Participation in Green Growth - A Potential Fully Realised?" Donor Committee for Enterprise Development.

Authors: Markéta von Hagen, Johanna Willems

Annotation:

Summary:
The purpose of the study is threefold: (1) to shed more light on the gender dimension of green growth, especially in the context of private sector development and thereby fill an important knowledge gap in the green growth discourse; (2) to validate women’s contributions to green growth and sustainable private sector development; and (3) ultimately to promote women’s empowerment and gender equality. The overall approach of the study combines three intersecting perspectives, which are dealt with independently as well as in tandem: a gender perspective with a focus on the (potential) participation of women, a greening perspective and a private sector development perspective. The study contains case studies from Brazil, Ecuador, Egypt, India, Philippines, South Africa, Uganda and Vietnam. (Summary from Green Growth Knowledge Platform)
 
Table of Contents:
1. Introduction
 
2. Factors Influencing Women's Participation in Green Growth
 
3. Making Women's Participation in Green Growth a Reality: Two Value Chain Examples
 
4. Assessment of Potentials, Risks and Relevant Approaches for Women's Participation in the Green Economy
 
5. Recommendations

Topics: Development, Economies, Ecological Economics, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality Regions: Africa, MENA, East Africa, North Africa, Southern Africa, Americas, South America, Asia, Middle East, South Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Brazil, Ecuador, Egypt, India, Philippines, South Africa, Uganda, Vietnam

Year: 2012

Indigenous Women's Activism, Ecofeminism, and Extractivism: Partial Connections in the Ecuadorian Amazon

Citation:

Sempértegui, Andrea. 2019. “Indigenous Women's Activism, Ecofeminism, and Extractivism: Partial Connections in the Ecuadorian Amazon.” Politics & Gender 1–28. doi: 10.1017/S1743923X19000023.

Author: Andrea Sempértegui

Abstract:

Over the last two decades, Latin America has witnessed a massive expansion of resource extraction. One of the most significant countermovements to emerge out of this context in Ecuador features a strong base and leadership of indigenous women from the Amazon. In their collective effort to resist extractivism, Amazonian women have drawn from elements of ecofeminist discourse and, in the process, situated their own claims within the broader indigenous territorial struggle. Ecofeminism has been transformed through this allyship as well, becoming more inclusive of indigenous women's perspectives. To shed light on these complex relationships, this article applies the framework of “partial connection” from feminist anthropology. It shows how postcolonial encounters between the state, missionaries, environmental activists, and indigenous communities in the Amazon carved out unique spaces for indigenous self-organization and politics. The historical analysis of such spaces, I argue, is crucial for grasping the allyship between Amazonian women and ecofeminists today. Rooted in a combination of positions that are partially, asymmetrically, and ambiguously connected, the allyship between Amazonian women and ecofeminists is best understood as a form of partially connected relationship.

Keywords: indigenous women, ecofeminism, state extractivism, environmental movements, indigenous politics, Ecuadorian Amazon

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Environment, Ethnicity, Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Ecuador

Year: 2019

Gender-Specific Out-Migration, Deforestation and Urbanization in the Ecuadorian Amazon

Citation:

Barbieri, Alisson F., and David L. Carr. 2005. “Gender-Specific Out-Migration, Deforestation and Urbanization in the Ecuadorian Amazon.” Global and Planetary Change 47: 99-110.

Authors: Alisson F. Barbieri, David L. Carr

Abstract:

The Ecuadorian Amazon, one of the richest reserves of biodiversity in the world, has faced one of the highest rates of deforestation of any Amazonian nation. Most of this forest elimination has been caused by agricultural colonization that followed the discovery of oil fields in 1967. Since the 1990s, an increasing process of urbanization has also engendered new patterns of population mobility within the Amazon, along with traditional ways by which rural settlers make their living. However, while very significant in its effects on deforestation, urbanization and regional development, population mobility within the Amazon has hardly been studied at all, as well as the distinct migration patterns between men and women. This paper uses a longitudinal dataset of 250 farm households in the Northern Ecuadorian Amazon to understand differentials between men and women migrants to urban and rural destinations and between men and women non-migrants. First, we use hazard analysis based on the Kaplan–Meier (KM) estimator to obtain the cumulative probability that an individual living in the study area in 1990 or at time t, will out-migrated at some time, t+n, before 1999. Results indicate that out-migration to other rural areas in the Amazon, especially pristine areas is considerably greater than out-migration to the growing, but still incipient, Amazonian urban areas. Furthermore, men are more likely to out-migrate to rural areas than women, while the reverse occurs for urban areas. Difference-of-means tests were employed to examine potential factors accounting for differentials between male and female out-migration to urban and rural areas. Among the key results, relative to men younger women are more likely to out-migrate to urban areas; more difficult access from farms to towns and roads constrains women’s migration; and access to new lands in the Amazon–an important cause of further deforestation–is more associated with male out-migration. Economic factors such as engagement in on-farm work, increasing resource scarcity–measured by higher population density at the farm and reduction in farm land on forest and crops–and increase in pasture land are more associated with male out-migration to rural areas. On the other hand, increasing resource scarcity, higher population density and weaker migration networks are more associated with female out-migration to urban areas. Thus, a vicious cycle is created: Pressure over land leads to deforestation in most or all farm forest areas and reduces the possibilities for further agricultural extensification (deforestation); out-migration, especially male out-migration, occurs to other rural or forest areas in the Amazon (with women being more likely to choose urban destinations); and, giving continuing population growth and pressures in the new settled areas, new pressures promote further out-migration to rural destinations and unabated deforestation.

Keywords: Ecuadorian Amazon, out-migration, gender differences, deforestation, urbanization

Topics: Agriculture, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Displacement & Migration, Migration, Climate Displacement, Environment, Gender Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Ecuador

Year: 2005

Ethnicity, Gender, and Oil: Comparative Dynamics in the Ecuadorian Amazon

Citation:

Vallejo, Ivette, Cristina Cielo, and Fernando García. 2019. "Ethnicity, Gender, and Oil: Comparative Dynamics in the Ecuadorian Amazon." Latin American Perspectives 46 (2): 182-98.

Authors: Ivette Vallejo, Cristina Cielo, Fernando García

Abstract:

ENGLISH ABSTRACT:
During the past decade, Ecuador’s Alianza PAÍS socialist government, primarily under the leadership of Rafael Correa, was committed to moving toward a post-neoliberal economy and implementing a “New Amazon” free of poverty, with expanded infrastructure and services, as part of the redistribution of oil revenues. However, in sites of state development projects, gender hierarchies and territorial dispossession in fact became more acute. Analysis of two place-based indigenous political ecologies—one in the central Amazon, where the state licensed new oil blocks in Sapara territory to a Chinese company in 2016, and the other in the Kichwa community of Playas de Cuyabeno in the northern Amazon, where the state company PetroAmazonas has operated since the 1970s—shows how women have reconfigured their ethnic and gender identities in relation to oil companies and the state in the context of rising and falling oil prices and in doing so reinforced or challenged male leaders’ positions in the internal structures of their communities and organizations.
 
SPANISH ABSTRACT:
Durante la última década, el gobierno socialista de Alianza PAÍS de Ecuador, princi- palmente bajo el liderazgo de Rafael Correa, se comprometió a avanzar hacia una economía posneoliberal e implementar una “Nueva Amazonía” libre de pobreza, con infraestructura y servicios ampliados, como parte de la redistribución de los ingresos petroleros. Sin embargo, en los sitios de proyectos estatales de desarrollo, las jerarquías de género y el despojo territorial de hecho se hicieron más agudos. Análisis de dos ecologías políticas indígenas basadas en el lugar—una en la Amazonía central, donde el estado otorgó licen- cias de nuevos bloques petroleros en el territorio de Sapara a una compañía china en 2016, y la otra en la comunidad Kichwa de Playas de Cuyabeno, en el norte de la Amazonía, donde la compañía estatal PetroAmazonas ha operado desde la década de 1970—muestra cómo las mujeres han reconfigurado sus identidades étnicas y de género en relación con las compañías petroleras y el estado en el contexto del alza y la caída de los precios del petróleo y, al hacerlo, refuerzan o desafían las posiciones de los líderes masculinos en la estructura interna de sus comunidades y organizaciones.

Keywords: neoextractivism, petroleum, ethnic identities, gender, Amazonia

Topics: Economies, Poverty, Ethnicity, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Indigenous, Infrastructure, Political Economies Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Ecuador

Year: 2019

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