Author Meets Critics: Megan Ybarra’s “Green Wars: Conservation and Decolonization in Guatemala’s Maya Forest”

Type: Panel
Sponsor Groups: Cultural and Political Ecology Specialty Group, Indigenous Peoples Specialty Group
Poster #:
Day: 4/13/2018
Start / End Time: 5:20 PM / 7:00 PM (MDT)
Room: Borgne Room, Sheraton, 3rd Floor
Organizers: Juan Herrera
Chairs: Juan Herrera


This panel session convenes a discussion among scholars with expertise on conservation, indigeneity, and racial formations to evaluate Megan Ybarra’s new book, “Green Wars” (University of California Press, 2017).

Megan Ybarra traces the articulation of the drug war, racialized dispossession and conservation in what she describes as “green wars.” Bringing Guatemala’s 36-year civil war into a longer history of 200 years of settler colonialism shows how contemporary conservation projects make Q’eqchi’ Mayas into immigrants on their own territory. Even as the post-war state call on them to claim rights as citizens, Q’eqchi’s survive as a collective people. She asks how their appeal to the nation-state, other Indigenous peoples, and the land itself might inform geography’s engagement with decolonization.


Type Details Minutes
Panelist Beth Rose Middleton UC Davis 20
Panelist Christopher Loperena University of San Francisco 20
Panelist Juanita Sundberg University of British Columbia 20
Panelist Carolyn Finney University of Kentucky 20

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