Wednesday 14 July 2010

the same lesson

In the current NYRB, John Terborgh reviews Rewilding the World: Dispatches from the Conservation Revolution by Caroline Fraser. He writes:

Conservation is indeed not so much the management of nature, but the management of people.  And wherever one goes, people have distinct traditions, outlooks, and economies.  Every project requires deep insights into the psychology, aspirations, and circumstances of the local residents.  Huge amounts of money  - billions - have been wasted because international donors did not take such nuances into account - just as our military made serious miscalculations in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan by failing to comprehend the historical and cultural setting of its engagements.

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