Call for contributions for an issue of the jso Narratives of Mining in the Pacific: History, Literature, Politics, Heritage
Mining in the Pacific is characterized by diversity and its role in the specific historical trajectories of the countries involved. A major economic, social and environmental issue, it traverses the region’s colonial and post-colonial periods, and its socio-environmental impacts are extremely diverse. Depending on the locations in the Pacific in which it developed, mining activity has been a contributing factor to both environmental disasters and processes of economic development; it also triggered land and cultural problems when the establishment of mines involved territories with strong symbolic and heritage associations. Mining is about wealth, power, resources and meaning. It has left its marks on contemporary Oceanic societies and affects the future of the populations, often in a way involving conflict. This impact has been repeated at different times and in various contexts, and has always been the subject of narratives: narratives of a non-mining past, narratives of a glorified or difficult present, narratives of a future, the shape of which is sometimes too clearly delineated.
The representations of mining in history and literature can provide us with very revealing insights into the way in which it shaped the imaginations and representations of the populations and institutions involved according to varying modalities and temporalities (before, during and after the mine, for example). Hence, whether they originate from field surveys, policy narratives, archive sources or literary works, the task is to demonstrate the insights that mining narratives can provide about the way in which mining has shaped the imaginations and representations of the populations and institutions affected by the activity. How does mining participate in the grand narratives of communities and/or nations in the Pacific? How does it contribute to mythologies and development of collective memories? In which context and based on which factors does it move from the status of an economic activity with negative environmental impacts to that of an historical legacy which is valorized as a memory-based and material extension of a collective? In short, how and at what level (local, national, global) does it contribute to or, conversely, prevent the creation of what Benedict Anderson refers to as “imagined communities”?
The aim of this issue is to highlight both the variety of the issues associated with mining in the Pacific and their points of convergence through the prism of its narration: how is mining narrated, by whom, to which ends and with which effects? To cover this topic, papers are expected that analyse and contextualize tests, situations and historical legacies, artistic productions (i.e. literary, visual, cinematographic, dramatic, etc.) and museographic works relating to the different narratives of mining in the Pacific. Hence, what is involved is the demonstration of the variety of human experiences of mining in the Pacific region through the multiplicity of the narratives that evoke the discourses, practices and representations of this very particular topic.
Proposals, to be compiled in accordance with the Journal’s style sheet, should be sent to the editorial staff as soon as possible (firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com), at least before December 31st.
Eddy Banaré, PhD in literature and research associate at the Centre des nouvelles études du Pacifique (cnep, University of New Caledonia), firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pierre-Yves Lemeur, Anthropologist, Research Institut for Development (ird, Nouméa), email@example.com. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
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