Drier worlds - living with water scarcity
Humberto Martins (CRIA-UMinho)
Mireia Campanera (Universitat Rovira i Virgili)
Paulo Mendes (CRIA-IUL / UTAD)
Aula 19
Monday 15 April, 16:30-18:15 (UTC+0)

Short abstract:

In this panel we propose to widen the anthropological debate on climatic issues and we invite ethnographies of drylands; places where people live with few amount of water. Considering drier or normally dry living conditions we want to know ways of dealing with these new and transforming conditions.

Long abstract:

The world experiments big transformations. Living conditions (not only those available for humans) are changing. Anthropocene is not so much a new geological era but mainly a big challenge for human survival. Anthropology is a field of knowledge that must be aware of everything that affects human lives and (increasingly) lives of those that share the planet Earth with us. This panel intends to explore ethnographies directly produced to know contexts, lives, and experiences of those who are living or are used to live with water scarcity; but we also invite knowledge produced originally with different goals but that can reveal changing environmental conditions. Droughts are a big issue in many places in the world so is potable water scarcity. Meanwhile for water is needed for agroindustries or touristic cities and developments. While new technological solutions are being created by governments and private companies, many individuals and communities face the spectrum of a drier world. This is a complex debate, produced under an environmental anthropology, a political and economic anthropology but also an anthropology that approaches psychological transformations felt by people who perceive and feel that conditions where they normally live are becoming unbearable. A drier world is not an inevitability for everyone everywhere. Again, disparities are felt differently. So the panel is quite open in its scope - water (less, few or many and more) is the central element and we want to discuss the (creative and transformative) uses of it.