P18
Appropriating rurals

Convenors:
Carolyn Morris (Massey University, Palmerston North)
Francesca Merlan (Australian National University)
Location:
C
Start time:
9 December, 2008 at 10:30
Session slots:
3

Short abstract:

This panel seeks papers that consider the linkages between rural change and the ways in which rural places and notions of rurality are mobilised in projects that emanate from, and resonate in, realms beyond the rural, and the social, cultural and political struggles that such processes generate.

Long abstract:

In many European and European-derived settler societies, high moral value has been attributed to the rural. Notions of the rural idyll have deep histories in such places, an enduring aspect of which is the idea that rurals are sites for the production of national goods of various kinds, economic and cultural. In recent decades many rural places have been significantly transformed, with, paradoxically, processes of agricultural intensification occurring in tandem with the reconstitution of the rural as both site and object of consumption. This denaturalisation of the relationship between the rural, the agrarian and the moral has opened up a space for the rural to be reimagined, with ownership of the rural (in a variety of senses from legal tenure through to representation) now contested. As a result of this, new possibilities for the (re)appropriation of the rural emerge. This panel seeks papers that consider the linkages between rural change and the ways in which rural places and notions of rurality are mobilised in projects that emanate from, and resonate in, realms beyond the rural, and the social, cultural and political struggles that such processes generate. Though this panel originates from work in Western societies, we welcome relevant cases from other places.