Yaks as Seed Dispersal Agents: Contested Narratives of Land Degradation in Eastern Tibet

Land degradation in Dzorge County, Sichuan Province, on the eastern Tibetan Plateau is perceived as a significant problem by both the regional government and indigenous Tibetan pastoralists. Multiple large-scale efforts to restore the grassland have been undertaken by the county’s Animal Husbandry Bureau since 2010, while concurrent, smaller-scale efforts using very different techniques have been led by local Tibetan pastoralists

Huatse Gyal
Organisé par
21 MAI. 2024 À 18H
Although government officials and local pastoralists share concerns regarding the detrimental effects of land degradation, especially desertification, their views on and values of land diverge, as do their understandings of the causes of land degradation. Drawing on a case study of a community-led land restoration project in Dzorge, this talk details the emergent and innovative forms of land restoration efforts that center land-based community building as a precondition to environmental protection. In doing so, the paper presents a larger argument about how ethnographic attention to community efforts to build habitable dwelling places may offer us opportunities to answer "what makes a good life" in the midst of political and environmental catastrophes today.
Huatse Gyal is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Rice University in Houston, Texas. He received his Ph.D. in Sociocultural Anthropology from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Dr. Gyal has contributed peer-reviewed articles to international journals such as Critical Asian Studies, Nomadic Peoples, and Ateliers d’anthropologie. He is the co-editor of a volume entitled Resettlement among Tibetan Nomads in China (2015). He recently co-edited a special issue, called Translating Across the Bardo: Centering the Richness of Tibetan Language in Tibetan Studies (2024). Dr. Gyal released his first feature length documentary film, “Khata: Poison or Purity?” in 2023. His research explores the interdependent and intimate relationships between land, language, animals, and community, with concerns about state environmentalism and climate change on the Tibetan Plateau.
Conférence SFEMT le 21/05/2024