ANTH 210 Spring 2015 Governing Nature (W)

Cross Listed as ENVI210, JLST210
This course analyzes the regulation of natural resources, primarily in today's United States. We will study how shared definitions of nature and, hence, nature's resources are instituted in law and policy and the extent to which these legal mandates shape actual landscapes. We will examine the workings of government bureaucracies--for example, the U.S. Forest Service and the National Park Service--to see how their understanding and administration of natural resources operate on the ground and affect local communities. We will consider an array of questions: What is the relationship between nature and what anthropologists call "the State"? Does scientific expertise command authority? When is the governance of natural resources synonymous with the governance of people? To what extent are taken-for-granted terms like "endangered" in reality social and legal constructs? In order to unpack these and other puzzles, we will turn to historical works and ethnography, focusing on insights from political and environmental anthropology. We will also read legal doctrine, such as the Wilderness Act of 1964 and judicial opinions regarding tribal sovereignty and fishing rights. Our case studies will range from rivers and national forests in the American Southwest to local conservation issues in the Berkshires, including land trusts.
Class Format: seminar
Requirements/Evaluation: active participation, two 5- to 7-page papers on assigned readings, one 12- to 15-page research paper
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Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preference: Anthropology and Sociology majors, ENVI majors/concentrators and Justice and Law concentrators
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Divisional Attributes: Division II, Writing Intensive
Other Attributes: ENVI Environmental Policy,ENVP PE-B Group Electives,ENVP PTL-A Group Electives,ENVP SC-B Group Electives,JLST Interdepartmental Electives
Enrollment Limit: 19
Expected Enrollment: 19
Class Number: 3148
ANTH 210 - 01 (S) SEM Governing Nature (W) Division 2: Social StudiesWriting Intensive Natalie B. Vena
MR 2:35 PM-3:50 PM Greylock D 3148
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