EASA2018: Staying, Moving, Settling
How are “staying, moving, and settling” translated under colonial and postcolonial conditions into legal relationships between indigenous and settler communities to regulate land in the Americas? How are these legalities constructed, transformed, mobilized, and challenged?
From the early 15th century on, people from all over the world have settled in the Americas. The colonial endeavor transformed the newcomers into settlers and those who already inhabited the Americas into natives. From the very beginning, settler and indigenous communities negotiated — violently or on agreement — some kind of legal relationship defining the rights to land. Today, these legal issues continue as indigenous territories still are occupied by internal refugees and agro-industrial enterprises, often supported by the state. Legal relationships between indigenous and settler communities have varied over time under changing socio-economic conditions and varying shapes of colonial and postcolonial power relations; but they were always highly unequal, giving rise to tensions and violent conflicts. Although most recently international legal regimes for the protection of indigenous land rights have emerged, these land rights conflicts between settlers and natives have not lost their prevalence. Against that background, the panel invites papers with either an ethnographic or ethnohistorical perspective (or a combination of both) on indigeneity and land rights in the Americas. In accordance with the conference theme, the panel shall address how “staying, moving, and settling” under colonial and postcolonial conditions have been and still are translated into legal relationships to regulate land in the Americas and, how this endeavor causes further legal dilemma. Papers should focus on how and by whom these legalities between indigenous and settler communities have been and still are constructed, transformed, mobilized, and challenged in the context of conflicts over land.