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Migrants and the making of the American landscape
Philosophy and History, KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Philosophy and History of Technology, History of Science, Technology and Environment. (Environmental Humanities Laboratory)
2017 (English)In: Environmental History of Modern Migrations / [ed] Marco Armiero and Richard Tucker, London: Routledge, 2017, p. 53-70Chapter in book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

In this chapter I will explore how migrants have adapted, fought with, and reshaped the environment they moved into, changing themselves and nature at the same time. Their tools, skills, knowledge, even their ethnic identities and solidarity, interacted with the local natural resources. Immigrants have looked at nature with different eyes; sometimes they saw natural resources where others could not see anything (for instance, in the case of urban commons); they adapted themselves or fought against the landscape they arrived in (as in the case of Southern plantations in the Mississippi Delta or the making of California’s agricultural landscape); their bodies became part of the capitalistic ecologies of industrial and mining production transforming both the external and the internal nature. While in the classical narrative pioneers entered, settled, and coped with a natural environment they heroically tamed, in this chapter I argue that immigrants’ environments were never only “natural.” Those were racialized landscapes, where class, law, and property rights were influential at least as much as soil, climate, viruses, or wild animals. Therefore, rather than speaking of how immigrants shaped or adapted to the “natural” environment, it seems more appropriate to analyze the metabolic relationships between immigrants and the socionatures in which they settled. I will do so employing several examples from the history of various immigrants’ groups, especially Italians, in the United States.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London: Routledge, 2017. p. 53-70
Series
Environmental Humanities
Keywords [en]
Migration, Environment, History
National Category
History
Research subject
History of Science, Technology and Environment
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-217114DOI: 10.4324/9781315731100Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85024899837ISBN: 978-1-138-84317-2 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-217114DiVA, id: diva2:1153908
Note

QC 20171101

Available from: 2017-10-31 Created: 2017-10-31 Last updated: 2017-11-07Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
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  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
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