Development as symbolic violence? The case of community forestry in Nepal (2006)

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Community Forestry (CF) program in Nepal is considered a world innovation in the field of participatory environmental governance towards meeting the twin goals of conservation and poverty reduction. Yet, growing evidence indicates that the poorer groups of beneficiaries are not gaining as anticipated, reflecting the continuing worldwide challenges of achieving democratic and equitable environmental governance. This article explores cultural politics that take place around CF to better understand conservation and livelihoods impact. Using Bourdieu’s notion of symbolic violence, the author seeks to explain how rules and practices of forest governance and benefit sharing are legitimated through historically created and tacitly held presuppositions in a particular field of practice (CF in this case). He shows how local level practices of forest governance are actually a site of symbolic violence, exercised by the state officials, development actors and political leaders over ordinary people and socially marginalized groups. Through in-depth analysis of Nepal CF case, He hopes to demonstrate an alternative framework to understand environmental and distributional outcomes of a development action by bringing to bear on the underlying processes of symbolic violence.
Year: 2006
Language: English
In: Policy-Practice Outlook Studies No ? 2 ForestAction Nepal 2006,

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 Record created 2011-12-21, last modified 2013-01-17