The University of Arizona

Three implications of political ontology for the political ecology of conservation

Dimitrios Bormpoudakis


Within political ecology, an important and timely critique has emerged which questions ontology and the nature of reality. This turn to ontology has been expressed in a new and influential paradigm, Political Ontology. In this article, I interrogate the politics of three tenets that seem central to  this  ontological  turn  within a political ecology of conservation context: (a) the insistence on the local, Indigenous and homogeneous subject and its corollary, the homogeneous Modern, Western subject; (b) the hegemony of the (green) neoliberal project, and (c) the incommensurability of non-modern and Western ontologies. I base my arguments on two case studies of resistance and/or struggle against green and un-green grabbing, the Skouries gold mine in Greece and the Lodge Hill development in England.

Keywords: political ontology, neoliberal nature, conservation, Indigenous, Greece, England

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