Embedded in the land: customary social relations and practices of resilience in an East Timorese community

Stead, Victoria 2012, Embedded in the land: customary social relations and practices of resilience in an East Timorese community, Australian journal of anthropology, vol. 23, no. 2, pp. 229-247.

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Title Embedded in the land: customary social relations and practices of resilience in an East Timorese community
Author(s) Stead, Victoria
Journal name Australian journal of anthropology
Volume number 23
Issue number 2
Start page 229
End page 247
Total pages 19
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Asia
Place of publication Melbourne, Vic.
Publication date 2012-08
ISSN 1035-8811
1757-6547
Summary Drawing on a case study of Cacavei, a rural subsistence community in Timor-Leste, this article explores the mutually constitutive relationship between people and land within customary forms of society. Patterns of land use and connection to land are not simply reflective of genealogical modes of social organisation, but are also enabling of them. Particularly, the embedding of ancestors within the land offers a means of accessing kinship relationships beyond the genealogical present. Embeddedness provides a quality of embodiment that makes ancestors active participants in social life. Constituted in the relational nexus of people and land, forms of social organisation in Cacavei have a mutability which goes some way to explaining the community’s resilience in spite of forced displacement and cultural disruption during the period of Indonesian occupation. This mutability might be considered more broadly as a source of resilience for customary communities grappling with modernising processes of change.
Language eng
Field of Research 160104 Social and Cultural Anthropology
169905 Studies of Pacific Peoples' Societies
Socio Economic Objective 970116 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of Human Society
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2012, Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Asia
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30059447

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