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From Andes to Amazon: Translocal Livelihoods in the Artisanal and Small-scale Gold Mining Sector

Faulkner, Sally (2020) From Andes to Amazon: Translocal Livelihoods in the Artisanal and Small-scale Gold Mining Sector. PhD thesis, University of Sheffield.

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Abstract

Artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASM) in Peru is associated with high environmental and social costs and those who work in the sector are often labelled as criminals. A more nuanced understanding of the communities that engage in ASM is vital for the development of transformative policy that can reduce the sector’s ecological footprint. Recognising the key role that migration plays in ASM, this thesis explores these communities from a translocal livelihoods perspective that incorporates the experiences of both men and women. It draws on Bourdieu’s Theory of Practice to conceptualise the translocal ASM community as a social field, highlighting how discrete locations are connected through migration and social practices. Within this social field, it is shown that ASM livelihoods trajectories tend to diverge, reflecting the heterogeneity of the translocal mining community. Through this research a clear distinction emerges between those who engage in the sector permanently and those who do so on only a temporary or seasonal basis. This highlights the importance of the temporal dimensions of translocality, as divergent translocal livelihoods and competing long-term interests contestations, or ‘temporal frictions’, within the community. Meanwhile, other contestations emerge between mining communities and the Peruvian Government. In particular, the community members are shown to develop a shared sense of injustice towards a policy that labels them as criminals and threatens their home. This is shown to create a collective identity amongst permanent residents that is reflected in the narratives adopted by local people in their legitimisation of their ‘deviant’ livelihood. The research concludes by building on observations of divergent mining livelihoods to present three broad categories of translocality that contribute to our understanding of translocal livelihoods in other regions of the Global South.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Social Sciences (Sheffield) > Urban Studies and Planning (Sheffield)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.808694
Depositing User: Miss Sally Faulkner
Date Deposited: 23 Jun 2020 15:44
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2020 09:53
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/26981

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