Leading rural land conflict as citizens and leaving it as denizens : Inside forest conservation politics in Burkina Faso

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Karambiri , M & Brockhaus , M 2019 , ' Leading rural land conflict as citizens and leaving it as denizens : Inside forest conservation politics in Burkina Faso ' , Journal of Rural Studies , vol. 65 , pp. 22-31 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrurstud.2018.12.011

Title: Leading rural land conflict as citizens and leaving it as denizens : Inside forest conservation politics in Burkina Faso
Author: Karambiri, Mawa; Brockhaus, Maria
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Department of Forest Sciences
University of Helsinki, International Forest Policy
Date: 2019-01
Language: eng
Number of pages: 10
Belongs to series: Journal of Rural Studies
ISSN: 0743-0167
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/299997
Abstract: Based on an empirical study of struggles concerning access to land and political inclusion (and exclusion) in the context of a forest conservation project in rural Burkina Faso, this paper analyses environmental politics through the lens of citizenship. In Centre-east Burkina Faso, a peasant resistance to a newly demarcated forest conservation zone turns into an identity and political conflict involving an international conservation organization, the state, decentralized and customary authorities. Based on shared history and residency, a new citizenship of migrants had emerged. These new citizens, finding their given lands within the new forest conservation area, rejected the project-proposed forest boundaries, put forward their citizenship entitlements and engaged in resistance. Eventually they also found themselves in conflict with their polity, lost their claims along with their still-fragile citizenship. Consequently, they were evicted from the forest and labelled as les deguerpis, denied citizenship and became denizens. Beyond confirming the fragile, processual, nature of citizenship these findings also bear theoretical and conceptual implications, challenge the mainstream way environmental politics are analysed and suggest the need to understand political belonging and citizenship as the very basis of environmental struggles.
Subject: Citizenship
Political belonging
Rural change
Land conflict
Accountability
Resistance
519 Social and economic geography
517 Political science
5141 Sociology
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