olwig-underdevelopmentanddevelopment

olwig-underdevelopmentanddevelopment - White, L (1967)...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
White, L. (1967) "The Uatorical Root8 of our Ecological crioirr" Science 155 (March 10) 1203-1207 Williams, R. (1972) "Ideas of N Ecology: The Shaping Inqu by J. Benthall (London) 146 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) -------- (1976) The Country and the City Wisner, B. (1978) "Does Geography Lack an Approach to Environmental Problenna?. Antipode 1O:l (March) 84-95 Zirbrunen, W. (1972) Geography of Air Pollution in the USSR (unpubliafid Ph.D. Dissertation, University of California, Berkeley) UNDERDEVELOPMENT AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF "NATURAL" PARK IDEOLOGY KAREN FOG OLWIG AND KENNETH OLWIG \ In 1972 we visited the Caribbean island of St. John on a brief survey of the Lesser Antilles. We enjoyed the scenery of the island and were pleased that the American National Park Service was converting two- thirds of the island's acreage into a National Park, so that the island's scenery would be preserved for future generations. We were therefore unpleasantly surprised when we returned to do fieldwork in 1974 to hear native islanders express an aversion to the park and its landscape--although they were not necessarily opposed to the idea of land- scape preservation per se. Park officials were aware of the problem and, like 'us, regretted that the local population did not seem to appreciate the main ideas behind natural park development. During our year's stay, however, we gradually became aware that the problem was not local ignorance of what constitutes natural parks, but rather a fundamental conflict in the perception and use of nature. (1) The basis of this conflict became more apparent when we began to explore the origin of natural parks. We found that far from being neutral and necessarily beneficial, as we had originally thought, natural parks had a strong ideological basis which is closely related to larger socio-economic develop- ments. The perception and use of nature held by a small community of peasants, descendants of plantation slaves, must of necessity be quite different from that of a people who had conquered the North American continent and become one of the most advanced capitalist societies. We then began to see that the ideology that blinded us to the contradictions in- herent in natural parks was not dissimilar to that behind this expansion. For example, many Americans feel that the spread of American-style natural parks brings the best of democracy and civilization to under- developed areas like St. John; it was a com- mon belief in the past that railroads-- UNIVERSITY OF COPENHAGEN which were a vehicle for capitalist expan- sion in America and elsewhere--did the same. We might therefore recall what Lenin said about the latter tenet of European faith: The building of railways seems to be a simple, natural, democratic, cultural and civilising enterprise: that is what it is in the opinion of the bourgeois professors . . . [and] petty-bourgeois philistines.
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Page1 / 10

olwig-underdevelopmentanddevelopment - White, L (1967)...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online