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Political Ecology in Merbeel: A Power Play Around Past and Present Wetland Resource Management


The interrelationship between human society and nature is multifarious. Indeed, interrelationship involves different power plays either in explicit or implicit forms. In different indigenous societies of the world, different actors have been influencing the natural resource management process. With time, the power plays commenced by such actors have been altering their forms with different actors at the zenith of hierarchical man-environment relationship. This research is an attempt to explore a succession of such power plays around a historically famous wetland Merbeel and its island of Upper Assam. The research methods followed here is qualitative. A participatory research approach is used to explore different local dynamics. The research shows that the wetland and its island have perceivably been under a through hegemonic control of different groups, from time to time. Due to natural resource availability, Merbeel and its island have always been in the epicentre of these hegemonic power plays. This study provides a brief explanation of this succession process of these power plays dividing it into three periods.


Political ecology; Merbeel; jal kowar; hegemony; ecotourism



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