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Indigenous Gold Mining in the Kenkuim Shuar Community: A Decolonial and Postcapitalist Approach to Sustainability
Södertörn University, School of Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies, Environmental Science.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2581-2588
Universidad Técnica Particular de Loja, Ecuador.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0120-9626
Universidad Técnica Particular de Loja, Ecuador.
Universidad Técnica Particular de Loja, Ecuador.
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2021 (English)In: Revista iberoamericana de estudios de desarrollo / Iberoamerican Journal of Development Studies, E-ISSN 2254-2035, Vol. 10, no 2, p. 178-202Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article analyzes the experiences of the small Shuar community of Kenkuim (Congüime) in the Ecuadorian Amazon that since 2016 carries out gold mining through the communitarian company Exploken Minera. The case is unique in South America, not only for being the only example of indigenous mining granted formal state concession, but also for its green profile, without the usage of chemicals or heavy metals. Within a setting of expanding extractivism conditioned by global capitalism and a theoretical framework of a decolonial and postcapitalist approach to sustainability, this ethnographic study deals with the expressions of resistance and adaptation of the Kenkuim community and how socio-cultural, ecological, and economic values are articulated by Shuar actors in relation to the new indigenous mining project. The results indicate that this mining experiment constitutes a meaningful alternative to destructive extractivismin line with decolonial and postcapitalist reasoning.

Abstract [es]

En este artículo, se analizan las experiencias de la pequeña comunidad Shuar de Kenkuim (Congüime) en la Amazonía ecuatoriana que, desde 2016, lleva a cabo la extracción de oro mediante la empresa comunitaria Exploken Minera. El caso es excepcional en Sudamérica, no solo por ser la única minería indígena con una concesión estatal formal, sino también por su perfil verde, sin el uso de productos químicos o metales pesados. Dentro del contexto de un creciente extractivismo condicionado por el capitalismo global y un marco teórico de una aproximación decolonial y poscapitalista a la sostenibilidad, en este estudio etnográfico se tratan las estrategias de resistencia y adaptación de la comunidad Kenkuim y cómo los valores socioculturales, ecológicos y económicos son articulados por los actores Shuar respecto al nuevo proyecto minero indígena. Los resultados indican que este experimento constituye una alternativa significativa frente al extractivismo destructivo y como un proyecto coherente con las lógicas decoloniales y poscapitalistas.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Saragoza: Universidad de Zaragoza (Spain) ; Spanish Network of Development Studies (REEDES) , 2021. Vol. 10, no 2, p. 178-202
Keywords [en]
Development studies, Congüime, Decoloniality, Postcapitalism, Resistance-Adaptation, Shuar community, Sustainable Indigenous mining.
Keywords [es]
Comunidad Shuar, Congüime, Decolonialidad, Minería indígena sostenible, Resistencia-Adaptación.
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary Environmental Sciences Ethnology
Research subject
Environmental Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-44412DOI: 10.26754/OJS_RIED/IJDS.570ISI: 000716394700008Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85119295756OAI: oai:DiVA.org:sh-44412DiVA, id: diva2:1531044
Funder
The Swedish Foundation for International Cooperation in Research and Higher Education (STINT), IB2018-7612Available from: 2021-02-25 Created: 2021-02-25 Last updated: 2021-12-16Bibliographically approved

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Lalander, Rickard

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