Displacement, Anti-Mining Movements and Extraction Education in India Today
Felix Padel (University of Oxford)
Malvika Gupta (University of Oxford)
Paper short abstract:
'Extraction Education' encapsulates the essence of mining funded schooling for indigenous children, which is gathering pace in mineral rich states in India, threatening cultural genocide. Such education is clearly aimed at undermining anti-mining movements.
Paper long abstract:
As many as 20 million tribal people have been displaced by industrial projects since India's Independence, that are based around the mining industry, including dams and factories. A few of the many movements against these have achieved prominence or been successful. Less focused on is the efforts of mining companies to gain legitimacy by funding tribal education. The largest manifestation of this tendency is the Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) in Bhubaneswar, the world's largest boarding school, with over 25,000 tribal children, part-funded by the very mining companies that are seeking tribal lands. This phenomenon has been termed 'extraction education (by Judith Walker, on a situation in Canada). In many ways, large, mining-funded boarding schools reconfigure the 'industrial schools', and network of residential schools for indigenous children throughout North America and Australia, as well as the policy of assimilation they embodied. This paper will map the terrain of various forms of investment and collaboration between mining companies, state and non-governmental organisations for tribal education. In some cases, money is channeled through mining company foundations for 'social programmes' , with education foremost on the list. In other cases, the government runs skill development programmes in partnership with the industry, with the objective of imparting 'useful skills' to the 'reserve army of labour'. Skills here become divorced from knowledge. This paper attempts to deconstruct this nexus and lay out the ramifications it has on indigenous economies, knowledge systems, social structure and the movements resisting takeover of lands and lives.
Youth and indigeneity on the move: mobilities, transcultural knowledge, and sustainability