Fighting Back Amazonian Deforestation in Ecuador: Individuals, Communities and the State in their Struggle to Save the Lungs of the World

By Ivan Humberto Jimenez-Williams.

Published by The Global Studies Journal

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

I traveled to Ecuador under a Western Illinois University (WIU) stipend in the summer of 2008 in order to research the economies of deforestation vis-à-vis the preservation of primary and secondary forests in the Amazon. During a period of three weeks I was able to spend time with a Quichua community and to travel into a number of national parks as well as biological and botanical reserves. Amazonian biodiversity is directly connected to the efforts of individuals, local communities, and the state to deal with the implications of deforestation. My research also included developing a study abroad component for the interdisciplinary course “Amazonia in the Arts: Ecocriticism vs. the Economies of Deforestation.” I chose the Ecuadorean Amazon as a case study because it represents a microcosm of widespread rainforest deforestation in the world at large. By adopting ecocriticism as my theory and methodology, I was able to structure my project in order to better understand the nature of the economies of deforestation.

Keywords: Ecocriticism, Environmental Policies, Amazon Biodiversity, Literature, Film Studies, Political Art and Economic Theory

Global Studies Journal, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp.145-158. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.230MB).

Dr. Ivan Humberto Jimenez-Williams

Al Ain ELS Center, Al Ain, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

My PhD is in Comparative Literature from University of Alberta and my academic background includes ecocriticism, drama, performance arts, film, folklore, popular culture, visual arts, translation studies, second-language acquisition and pragmatics. I also have research interests in history, environmental studies, demography, sociological theory, sociology of culture and art, sociology of religion, international relations, comparative politics and political analysis. Until last year I was an Assistant Professor at Western Illinois University where I taught a number of interdisciplinary courses for the Department of Foreign Languages and for African-American Studies. I have essay publications in the areas of Ecocriticism, Film Studies, Drama, Latin-American and Caribbean Studies. Presently, I am working for the Al Ain ELS Center in the U.A.E. and will commence work for the UAE University in the Spring of 2010. Aside from the USA and the UAE, I have also taught in Saudi Arabia, Canada and Venezuela.

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