The affective power of planning: Governing indigenous grabbed lands in the Ecuadorian Amazon region

Topics: Indigenous Peoples, Urban and Regional Planning, Latin America
Keywords: Planning, affect, indigenous, housing, Ecuador-Amazonia
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 3:05 PM / 4:45 PM
Room: Cleveland 2, Marriott, Mezzanine Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

This paper discusses the affective power of planning in indigenous-grabbed lands in the Pañacocha Millennium Community, a public housing project in the Ecuadorian Amazon region. While these projects in indigenous territories are celebrated at the national level, I demonstrate how indigenous and non-indigenous families demand affective responses regarding the quality, design relevance, and cultural pertinence of housing. I argue that this project produces affectivities which are reliant on people own politics. These politics are flowing between two forms of housing conceptions -indigenous and nonindigenous- in ways that impact their subjectivities, shape their quotidian actions and encounters, and trigger distinct affects. Paradoxically, the legal gaps and spatial ambiguities that produce the affective responses, as disciplinary practices of the state, are also the ground from which indigenous and nonindigenous intensify the paternalistic notion of ‘stakeholder inclusion’ towards entitlements to urban ways of life. Yet indigenous and nonindigenous families also develop their own spatiality of housing and claims through politics of affect founded on memory-space-sensibility. Through this analysis, I call for a decolonial planning approach that is attentive to the geographies of affect and emotion. In doing so, I deep a finer study of the land-grabbing ontology by underlying affect in micro-intensified processes of dispossession. This paper draws upon empirical research developed over a period of 10 months (2014-2017) and self-reflection of my personal experience living in the Ecuadorian Amazonia (2009-2014).

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