The political, social and ecological transformation of a landscape: a case of rubber in Xishuangbanna (2006)

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Driven by economic and ideological policies, rubber plantations have been established in southern China since the early 1950s. Rubber was seen as a perfect way to modernize the “primitive” shifting agricultural practices of indigenous minorities and to “legitimize” the landscape according to new Maoist State ideals. However, large-scale rubber production was dogged by problems, and most rubber production now emanates from smallholders, challenging the state notion that “bigger is better.” In the transition to a free market, smallholder rubber farms, which grow a wider variety of crops, have greater flexibility and are better able to adjust to market changes. These small mixed farms also enhance ecological and cultural diversity.
Year: 2006
Language: English
In: Mountain Research and Development, Vol.26, No. 3: 254-262 p.

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 Record created 2010-12-24, last modified 2013-01-17