Chapter

The Political Forests

Arupjyoti Saikia

in Forests and Ecological History of Assam, 1826–2000

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780198069539
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081240 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198069539.003.0009
The Political Forests

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This chapter discusses forest and forest conservation in South and South-East Asia within a comparative perspective. It also discusses the future of political forests wherein reforestation movements will be in constant conflict with commerce and agriculture. Compared to the history of colonial forestry, the making of the forest policy in the post-colonial period was defined by the complexities of the political matrix and political machinery. Although forests nowadays are more politically influenced, the Assam forests in the colonial period were not entirely free from political negotiation and machinery. It was also under the commercial and profit-generating interests of the imperial rule and the powerful political class. Apart from discussing the history of the Assam forests, its difference and similarities in other forests, the chapter also evaluates how the present day ecological conflicts are intricately woven in the colonial era when forests, land and resource-based conflicts began to take shape.

Keywords: Assam forest; forest conservation; South Asia; South-East Asia; political forests; reforestation; forest policy

Chapter.  3652 words. 

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