Posthuman Rights and Responsibilities in Environmentalisms from Below: Territorial Life Projects in the Pluriverse


Rosemary J. Coombe (York University) 

David J. Jefferson (University of Canterbury) 

In decolonial determinations to resist the modern ontological separation of nature from culture, people living in Andean Community countries increasingly recognize natural and cultural forces to be inextricably interrelated under the principle of the pluriverse (Blaser and de la Cadena 2018, Escobar 2019). After years of struggles led by Indigenous, Afro-descendant, and campesino communities, mobilizations by new social movements, and citizen activism, constitutional reforms affirmed the plurinational and intercultural natures of the region’s polities. Across the Andean Community region, communities articulate human rights and responsibilities ‘from below’, giving voice to political ontologies in which the agency of non-human actors features in the assertion of collective life projects. To what extent and how do such posthuman articulations reconfigure territory and the rights of humans, nature, and other beings? For this panel, we welcome papers based upon fieldwork in all regions of Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru that attend to multispecies relationships (e.g., between people and endemic plants, animals, and other ecosystem inhabitants) and local communities’ connections to place in ecocentric initiatives and territorial enterprise. We are especially interested in ethnographic studies conducted through an ontological, multispecies, or posthuman lens that engage with emerging political ecologies.      

Please send paper abstract of no more than 250 words with a paper title, your name and affiliation, to Rosemary Coombe (, no later than May 9, 2021. The panel abstract will be revised again to reflect the included submissions. Suggestions for potential discussants are also welcome.