Friday, October 6, 2023

"Rooting in a Useless Land"

New from the University of California Press: Rooting in a Useless Land: Ancient Farmers, Celebrity Chefs, and Environmental Justice in Yucatan by Chelsea Fisher.

About the book, from the publisher:

In Rooting in a Useless Land, Chelsea Fisher examines the deep histories of environmental-justice conflicts in Mexico's Yucat√°n Peninsula. She draws on her innovative archaeological research in Yaxunah, an Indigenous Maya farming community dealing with land dispossession, but with a surprising twist: Yaxunah happens to be entangled with prestigious sustainable-development projects initiated by some of the most famous chefs in the world. Fisher contends that these sustainable-development initiatives inadvertently bolster the useless-land narrative—a colonial belief that Maya forests are empty wastelands—which has been driving Indigenous land dispossession and environmental injustice for centuries. Rooting in a Useless Land explores how archaeology, practiced within communities, can restore history and strengthen relationships built on contested ground.
Visit Chelsea Fisher's website.

--Marshal Zeringue