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Accepted Paper:

Community-managed Marine Conservation in Vanuatu: Preserving and Transforming a Multispecies Assemblage for the Future  
Arno Pascht (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München)

Paper short abstract:

The paper relates different conceptualisations of conservation in Vanuatu to each other. It suggests the interpretation of a community-managed marine conservation area as the attempt of local actors to transform and preserve an assemblage of fish and humans.

Paper long abstract:

The paper deals with dynamics of local conceptualisations of ‘conservation’ in the village of Siviri in Vanuatu where villagers have established and maintain a small community-managed marine conservation area on their own initiative. When inhabitants of Siviri encountered the concept of conservation during workshops and awareness events, they adopted the term and created a new practice designed to meet their own needs. This paper carves out local conceptualisations and practices of ‘conservation’, and relates them to conceptualisations of conservation in the context of other approaches which may involve a dichotomy between the environment and humans. It suggests that conservation in Siviri can be interpreted as creative engagement of the villagers with their environment(s) in order to transform and preserve the specific world-making assemblage including humans and fish for future generations. Using theoretical concepts of ‚assemblages‘ and ‚world making‘, the paper will show that there are ontological differences regarding conservation in Siviri and the concept of conservation used in Vanuatu’s national policy. It is argued that using these theoretical concepts may enable anthropology to carve out temporalities and spatialities of conservation.

Panel P050b
Transformations in the anthropology of conservation II
  Session 1 Friday 29 July, 2022, -