Great new book from Karine Gagné: Caring for Glaciers: Land, Animals, and Humanity in the Himalayas

This is a great looking new title from Karine Gagné at the University of Guelph.

Available here from University of Washington Press, where the blurb below is also from.

GAGASGRegional geopolitical processes have turned the Himalayan region of Ladakh, in northwest India, into a strategic border area with an increasing military presence that has decentered the traditional agropastoralist economy. This in turn has led to social fragmentation, the growing isolation of elders, and ethical dilemmas for those who strive to maintain traditional subsistence activities. Simultaneously, climate change is causing glaciers – a vital source of life in the region – to recede, which elders perceive as the consequence of a broken bond with the natural environment and the deities that inhabit the landscape.

Caring for Glaciers looks at the causes and consequences of ongoing social and cultural change in peoples’ relationship with the natural environment. It illuminates how relations of reciprocity – learned through everyday life and work in the mountains with the animals, glaciers, and deities that form Ladakh’s sacred geography – shape and nurture an ethics of care. Integrating contemporary studies of affect, landscape, and multispecies anthropology, Caring for Glaciers contributes to the anthropology of ethics by examining the moral order that develops through the embodied experience of life and work in the Himalayas.

Karine Gagné is assistant professor of anthropology at the University of Guelph.

“The idea of morality serves as an axis for Gagné to bring together climate change, geopolitical tensions within and between nations, and the dilemmas of Indigenous peoples faced with the forces of nationalism and globalization.”
-Benjamin Orlove, anthropologist and professor of international and public affairs, Columbia University

“A timely and important foregrounding of the complex assemblage of human environmental relationships in the Himalayas.”
-Mona Bhan, coauthor of Climate without Nature: A Critical Anthropology of the Anthropocene

“Karine Gagné offers a perceptive and ethnographically rich monograph to the growing field of borderlands studies in high Asia and boosts our awareness of the Human-Nature bond on these margins.”
-Jean Michaud, coauthor of Frontier Livelihoods: Hmong in the Sino-Vietnamese Borderlands


Running Dry: Water, People, and the Planet in Marathwada, India

This is a very interesting series on water problems in Marathwada, India. Well worth the read, and certainly important for understands the broader interconnections and logics affecting people and water.

Dipesh Chakrabarty: The civilizational roots of Indian democracy

It was recently reported that India will build its largest dam ever; a project for the most part bereft of environmental or social assessments. In that light, this lecture by Dipesh Chakrabarty seemed appropriate.