Resistance, rootedness and mining protest in Phulbari

Nuremowla, Sadid Ahmed (2012) Resistance, rootedness and mining protest in Phulbari. Doctoral thesis (PhD), University of Sussex.

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This thesis is concerned with the dynamics and social morphology of resistance to
mining in Bangladesh. Using the case of on-going resistance to a government supported
open-pit coal mine project proposed by Asia Energy Corporations in Phulbari, Northwest
Bangladesh, it considers the resistance within a particular context while investigating how the ideas held by various groups intersect and conflict in developing networks of resistance. Through ethnographic engagement in a particular ‘community’, as well as with the activism at the national level, the research attempts to explore how and to what extent the connection and disjuncture of observations and experiences of particular groups shape the resistance movement.

The aims of this thesis are two fold. Firstly it expands on anthropological accounts of
social movements’ rootedness in patterns of daily life. As such I examine how local
resistance to mining initiatives emerges in specific contexts and around such located
concerns that often remain unexpressed in the public discourse of protests. I show how
resistance builds around anxieties of losing ‘home’ and accompanying rights and

Secondly, this research contributes to the anthropological analysis of ‘connection’ and
‘network’ in this ‘global’ era. Through an ethnographic study of the resistance
movement against mining I show how the movement’s network is not a smooth
integration of groups and actors; tension and ambiguity is central to it. I look at the
ways in which friction of disparate ideas attached to different level of analysis, i.e.
‘local’, ‘national’ and ‘universal’, pave way for the formation of tentative alliances as
the differential observations come to fit into the common discourses of protest.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > Anthropology
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DS History of Asia > DS393 Bangladesh. East Pakistan
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labour > HD9000 Special industries and trades > HD9506 Mineral and metal industries
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 25 Oct 2012 10:48
Last Modified: 07 Sep 2015 14:51

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