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Pesquisadores e suas táticas discursivas no debate sobre populações tradicionais e proteção à biodiversidade

Author(s): Cleyton Gerhardt

Journal: Desenvolvimento e Meio Ambiente
ISSN 1518-952X

Volume: 21;
Start page: 43;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: traditional peoples | biodiversity | scientific discourse.

The debate over the relationship between biodiversity and traditional populations today is much divided. Such a polarized atmosphere is expressed in the interface that marks the researchers’ scientific workand political action around the subject. As I argue, one of the effects of this phenomenon has been the crystallization of a general controversy: on the one hand, a search for evidence from those who support the thesis that traditional peoples always vandalized nature; on the other hand, a similar effort from scientists that look for evidence to prove that these peoples protect biodiversity. As a result, we have a debate in which scientists and their research become very powerful weapons of persuasion. Like in a trial, their researches are used to prosecute or defend traditional populations and/or protected areas, which play the part of defendants or victims. As a result, experts who invest in this discussion are often called on to make argumentative choices. These argumentative choices are the main point of this article. Aiming at accessing the universe of expert discourse on policies in support of traditional populations and stricter policies to protect biodiversity, I will then take the antagonisms that emerge as a laboratory for observing the dynamics of arguments and counterarguments that follow. Finally, I question the possibility that in discussing the issue from the logic of “either/or” (traditional populations either “save” or “destroy” biodiversity) chances are that the endless disputes for either party lead to an analytically barren controversy without answers.
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