On Ecocide: Toward a Conceptual Framework

Darren O'Byrne, Kubra Kulkandalen

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    The extent to which ecocide should be treated within the existing framework of genocide has been hotly debated, and recent literature on what some have called the anthropocene epoch has further highlighted the extent of human responsibility for environmental destruction. This paper contributes to those debates by locating ecocidal practices and the corresponding ecological resistance within a paradigm shift from the anthropocentric economic knowledge of Western industrial capitalism towards an eco-paradigm found among many indigenous communities. Such communities exist in close relationship to their environments, but such ways of life are threatened by the activities of multinational corporations, such as the oil companies operating in and around the Amazon region of Ecuador. By appreciating the impact of such activities upon indigenous ways of life, we are obliged to treat ecocide as a genocidal project within a human rights framework.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)333-349
    Number of pages17
    JournalDistinktion: Scandinavian Journal of Social Theory
    Issue number3
    Early online date28 Sept 2017
    Publication statusPublished - 2017


    • Anthropocene; Ecocide; Genocide; Human Rights; Oil Energy in Ecuador; Paradigm Shift; Traditional Environmental Knowledge

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