“Silent Spring in the Land of the Eternal Spring – Searching for Rachel Carson in Guatemala”

"Silent Spring in the Land of the Eternal Spring – Searching for Rachel Carson in Guatemala" from zoe young on Vimeo.

When Liza Grandia was young she worked with Conservation International (CI) in Guatemala’s Maya Bioshere Reserve. Inspired by Rachel Carson’s work in the USA, she hoped to build local environmental movements for protection of forests full of ancient archaeology, vibrant indigenous cultures and rare and wild creatures.

But it seemed her employers had other ideas.

Here, she tells a tale of institutional myopia, betrayal and systematic failure in big conservation. Now a cancer survivor, a mother and a clear eyed university professor, her story needs to be heard to be believed..

Read more:

2012. “Imagining a New Wildlife Politics: Conservation Contrarians and Corporate Elephants in the Room.”
A Review Essay of Rosaleen Duffy’s ‘Nature Crime: How We Are Getting Nature Wrong’.
Journal of International Wildlife Law and Policy 15(1): 95-114.

2009. “Silent Spring in the Land of Eternal Spring: The Germination of a Conservation Conflict.”
Current Conservation 3(3): 10-13.

Liza’s bio: clarku.edu/faculty/facultybio.cfm?id=663

Update from Liza, November 2012:

Without a community base, CI had trouble fundraising in Guatemala and closed their offices in 2011 with a characteristically slick CI report that takes false credit for a lot of things CI had nothing to do with.

ProPeten’s work continues along quite well: propeten.org

This presentation was recorded in May 2008 for the symposium:
“Problematizing Neoliberal Biodiversity Conservation: Displaced and Disobedient Knowledge”
Washington D.C., American University, Department of Anthropology, May 16-19, 2008
Organizers: Jim Igoe (Dartmouth College, Department of Anthropology) & Sian Sullivan (Birkbeck School of Geography, University of London, )

An Executive Summary for the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) is available here:

A special issue of Current Conservation also features articles by several of the contributors:

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