"Living in a Cage: The Intimate Geographies of Conservation in South Africa and Tanzania"

Reid-Hresko, John | from Multimedia Library Collection:

Reid-Hresko, John. “Living in a Cage: The Intimate Geographies of Conservation in South Africa and Tanzania.” Conservation & Society 16, no. 3 (2018): 280-90. doi: 10.4103/cs.cs_16_165.

National parks are socially produced conservation spaces that shape the lives, understandings, and behaviours of the men and women who live and work within them. This article draws on 18 months of comparative ethnographic research with men and women who are employed and reside inside in protected areas in northern Tanzania and South Africa’s Kruger National Park. Protected area management decisions regarding the migration, isolation, concentration, and living arrangements of employees combine with structural forces of relational material inequality and varied understandings of gender relations to produce geographies of intimacy that shape both perceptions and patterns of sexual and emotive behaviours in powerful, and potentially troublesome, ways among conservation actors. Although the specific configuration of this constellation of forces is context dependent and unique to each location, there are also discernable similarities across national context. Given the human resource intensive nature of conservation, these findings have direct relevance for the future success of national parks in both countries and for conservation more generally. (Text from author’s abstract)

© John Reid-Hresko 2018. Conservation & Society is available online only and is published under a Creative Commons license (CC BY 2.5).