Negotiating sustainability across scales

Singh, J. N. and Bartlett, T. (2017) Negotiating sustainability across scales. AILA Review, 30(1), pp. 50-71. (doi:10.1075/aila.00003.sin)

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Abstract

This paper represents voices of community organizers on Barra, a small island in the Outer Hebrides, Scotland. Although, arguably Barra is geographically and socio-politically located in the peripheries of Scotland, Britain and Europe, the island has been a center of North Atlantic maritime trade networks for centuries. In the current phase of Europeanization and devolution of powers within the United Kingdom, the community finds itself in the position of having to attend to multiple scales: the European Union, the United Kingdom, Scotland and the island itself with its various interest groups. We draw on ethnographic interviews with community organizers that were elicited for the research project Sustainability on the Edge to illustrate some political challenges and possibilities of such scalar realities. We show that community organizers construct a voice that emphasizes a historical quality of what it means to live on Barra while inflecting this quality with worldly knowledge that enables access to resources from outside the island. Our findings remind us that centers and peripheries are neither fixed categories that could simply be mapped on geographical visualizations nor notions independent of discursive practice.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Bartlett, Dr Tom
Authors: Singh, J. N., and Bartlett, T.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Critical Studies > English Language and Linguistics
Journal Name:AILA Review
Publisher:John Benjamins Publishing Company
ISSN:1461-0213
ISSN (Online):1570-5595
Published Online:15 June 2018
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 John Benjamins Publishing Company
First Published:First published in AILA Review 30(1):50-71
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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