The Locality in the Anthropocene: Perspectives on the Environmental History of Eastern India
Using the lens of environmental history, this chapter looks at the impact of the Anthropocene in the locality of eastern India by examining the links between deforestation, air and water pollution, land-use changes including mining and livelihood changes among local communities such as the Ho and the Munda from the nineteenth century. It concentrates on their forms of subsistence, their conflicts in terms of their notions of the sacred forest and their cultures of seeing and being that are coming under assault in the wake of rapid economic and social change. The chapter builds on the view by Lewis and Maslin (Lewis, S.L. and M.A. Maslin, 2015 ‘Defining the Anthropocene’, Nature 519, pp. 171–180) that ‘the power that humans wield is like any other force of nature and can be used, withdrawn or modified. The recognition that human actions are driving far-reaching changes to the life-supporting infrastructure of the Earth … has philosophical, social, political and economic implications’. But it may be already too late to do very much about it all.
KeywordsActivism Adivasi Anthropocene Environmental history India
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