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Anthropogenic dark earths in the landscapes of Upper Guinea, West Africa: intentional or inevitable?

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Anthropogenic dark earths in the landscapes of Upper Guinea, West Africa : intentional or inevitable? / Fraser, James; Leach, Melissa; Fairhead, James.

In: Annals of the Association of American Geographers, Vol. 104, No. 6, 2014, p. 1222-1238.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

Harvard

Fraser, J, Leach, M & Fairhead, J 2014, 'Anthropogenic dark earths in the landscapes of Upper Guinea, West Africa: intentional or inevitable?', Annals of the Association of American Geographers, vol. 104, no. 6, pp. 1222-1238. https://doi.org/10.1080/00045608.2014.941735

APA

Fraser, J., Leach, M., & Fairhead, J. (2014). Anthropogenic dark earths in the landscapes of Upper Guinea, West Africa: intentional or inevitable? Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 104(6), 1222-1238. https://doi.org/10.1080/00045608.2014.941735

Vancouver

Author

Fraser, James ; Leach, Melissa ; Fairhead, James. / Anthropogenic dark earths in the landscapes of Upper Guinea, West Africa : intentional or inevitable?. In: Annals of the Association of American Geographers. 2014 ; Vol. 104, No. 6. pp. 1222-1238.

Bibtex

@article{68b94dd8c0eb468293a2f509e9eff73b,
title = "Anthropogenic dark earths in the landscapes of Upper Guinea, West Africa: intentional or inevitable?",
abstract = "Drawing on the recent identification of anthropogenic dark earths (ADEs) in West Africa{\textquoteright}s Upper Guinea forest region, this article engages with Amazonian debates concerning whether such enriched soils were produced intentionally or not.We present a case study of a Loma settlement in Northwest Liberia in which ethnography, oral history, and landscape mapping reveal subsistence practices and habitus that lead African dark earths (AfDEs) to form inevitably around settlements and farm camps. To consider the question of intentionality andhow the inevitability of AfDE is experienced, we combine historical and political ecology with elements of nonrepresentational theory. The former show how the spatial configuration of AfDEs in the landscape reflect shifting settlement patterns shaped by (1) political and economic transformations, mediated by (2) enduring ritual practices and social relations between first-coming and late-coming social groups that are symbolically related as uncles and nephews. We use nonrepresentational theory to show how the Loma phenomenologicalexperience of these soils and their origins is better conceptualized in terms of sensual objects, the formation of which is inflected by these social and political processes. We thus reframe the debate away from intentionality, to theorize enriched anthropogenic soils and landscapes in terms of shifting sociocultural, political, and historical factors interplaying with the practical, sensually experienced, and inevitable effects of everyday life.",
keywords = "historical ecology, nonrepresentational theory , phenomenology , political ecology , speculative realism",
author = "James Fraser and Melissa Leach and James Fairhead",
year = "2014",
doi = "10.1080/00045608.2014.941735",
language = "English",
volume = "104",
pages = "1222--1238",
journal = "Annals of the Association of American Geographers",
issn = "0004-5608",
publisher = "Routledge",
number = "6",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - Anthropogenic dark earths in the landscapes of Upper Guinea, West Africa

T2 - intentional or inevitable?

AU - Fraser, James

AU - Leach, Melissa

AU - Fairhead, James

PY - 2014

Y1 - 2014

N2 - Drawing on the recent identification of anthropogenic dark earths (ADEs) in West Africa’s Upper Guinea forest region, this article engages with Amazonian debates concerning whether such enriched soils were produced intentionally or not.We present a case study of a Loma settlement in Northwest Liberia in which ethnography, oral history, and landscape mapping reveal subsistence practices and habitus that lead African dark earths (AfDEs) to form inevitably around settlements and farm camps. To consider the question of intentionality andhow the inevitability of AfDE is experienced, we combine historical and political ecology with elements of nonrepresentational theory. The former show how the spatial configuration of AfDEs in the landscape reflect shifting settlement patterns shaped by (1) political and economic transformations, mediated by (2) enduring ritual practices and social relations between first-coming and late-coming social groups that are symbolically related as uncles and nephews. We use nonrepresentational theory to show how the Loma phenomenologicalexperience of these soils and their origins is better conceptualized in terms of sensual objects, the formation of which is inflected by these social and political processes. We thus reframe the debate away from intentionality, to theorize enriched anthropogenic soils and landscapes in terms of shifting sociocultural, political, and historical factors interplaying with the practical, sensually experienced, and inevitable effects of everyday life.

AB - Drawing on the recent identification of anthropogenic dark earths (ADEs) in West Africa’s Upper Guinea forest region, this article engages with Amazonian debates concerning whether such enriched soils were produced intentionally or not.We present a case study of a Loma settlement in Northwest Liberia in which ethnography, oral history, and landscape mapping reveal subsistence practices and habitus that lead African dark earths (AfDEs) to form inevitably around settlements and farm camps. To consider the question of intentionality andhow the inevitability of AfDE is experienced, we combine historical and political ecology with elements of nonrepresentational theory. The former show how the spatial configuration of AfDEs in the landscape reflect shifting settlement patterns shaped by (1) political and economic transformations, mediated by (2) enduring ritual practices and social relations between first-coming and late-coming social groups that are symbolically related as uncles and nephews. We use nonrepresentational theory to show how the Loma phenomenologicalexperience of these soils and their origins is better conceptualized in terms of sensual objects, the formation of which is inflected by these social and political processes. We thus reframe the debate away from intentionality, to theorize enriched anthropogenic soils and landscapes in terms of shifting sociocultural, political, and historical factors interplaying with the practical, sensually experienced, and inevitable effects of everyday life.

KW - historical ecology

KW - nonrepresentational theory

KW - phenomenology

KW - political ecology

KW - speculative realism

U2 - 10.1080/00045608.2014.941735

DO - 10.1080/00045608.2014.941735

M3 - Journal article

VL - 104

SP - 1222

EP - 1238

JO - Annals of the Association of American Geographers

JF - Annals of the Association of American Geographers

SN - 0004-5608

IS - 6

ER -