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Beyond Inclusive Conservation: The Value of Pluralism, the Need for Agonism, and the Case for Social Instrumentalism

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posted on 2016-10-10, 10:43 authored by Brett S. Matulis, Jessica R. Moyer
Recent debate within the conservation community about how to define our mission and delineate our objectives has highlighted frictions between conventional (biodiversity centered) conservation and “new” (socio-economically driven) conservation. It has also prompted calls for “inclusive conservation,” aimed at accommodating both conventional and new perspectives under one big tent, and quelling continued debate. In focusing on the compatibility between two well established perspectives, however, and constructing conservation as a universal agenda rooted in a common environmental ethic, inclusive conservation reinforces currently dominant thinking in the field. We argue here that, despite its name, inclusive conservation further suppresses marginal views within the conservation community by denying the very existence of margins. Drawing on the work of Nancy Fraser and Chantal Mouffe, we underscore the importance of conflict and agonistic pluralism in maintaining space for historically underrepresented points of view. In doing so, we stake out a position in the conservation debate for what we call social instrumentalism, which is an already marginalized perspective that is further suppressed by calls for inclusivity. Finally, we offer a positive alternative vision for the future of conservation, or more aptly, for a future characterized by many different conservations.

History

Citation

Conservation Letters, 2016, in press

Author affiliation

/Organisation/COLLEGE OF SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING/Department of Geography

Version

  • VoR (Version of Record)

Published in

Conservation Letters

Publisher

Wiley Open Access

issn

1755-263X

Acceptance date

2016-07-18

Copyright date

2016

Available date

2016-10-10

Publisher version

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/conl.12281/abstract;jsessionid=F0B07F6B45FDEB7A499A07BCD5AFD244.f01t02

Language

en

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