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Conflict, Negotiation, and CoexistenceRethinking Human–Elephant Relations in South Asia$
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Piers Locke and Jane Buckingham

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199467228

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199467228.001.0001

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Challenges of Coexistence

Challenges of Coexistence

Human–Elephant Conflicts in Wayanad, Kerala, South India

(p.272) 12 Challenges of Coexistence
Conflict, Negotiation, and Coexistence

Ursula Münster

Oxford University Press

Concerned with fractious relations of interspecies conflict in and around the Wayanad Wildlife Reserve, this chapter considers the knowledge, experience, and claims of forest officials, veterinarians, biologists, farmers, forest labourers, and mahouts. In the context of colonial and post-colonial projects of resource extraction, economic development, and wildlife conservation, this facilitates descriptive analysis of a crisis of interspecies conflict, where humans and elephants struggle to survive together in a crowded silvicultural and agricultural landscape subject to dispute over imperatives of development, conservation, and welfare. Acknowledging the adaptive intelligence of elephants and their ability to outsmart defensive technologies, the author notes how the relational dynamics of this troubled interspecies history produces disturbed socializations that intensify fear, aggression, and violence.

Keywords:   human–elephant conflict, knowledge of elephants, defensive technology, disturbed socialization, Wayanad, Kerala

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