Local agricultural knowledge as time manipulation: Paddy field farmers after the great east japan earthquake of 2011

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2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article explores the role of paddy field farmers’ local knowledge in the context of adaptation to a post-disaster setting. The Tohoku earthquake and tsunami of 2011 heavily damaged the northeast coastal region and swept away virtually all human spaces, including agricultural fields. Many small-scale farmers abandoned cultivation, and the government instead facilitated large-scale farmers. Those who restarted rice production expanded the cultivated land. I examine this socio-cultural context focusing on the dynamism and complexities of the farmers’ local knowledge. The most important aspect in this knowledge can be seen as time manipulation contributing to labor efficiency. Local knowledge has three dimensions: Maturation process, environment, and biological response. While the first two of these are oriented to tradition and the collective, the last is rather individualistic and is innovative in nature. Embracing these three types of knowledge in communities has supported agricultural adaptation in the post-disaster context.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)257-284
Number of pages28
JournalAsian Ethnology
Volume77
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Keywords

  • Disaster risk reduction
  • Ethno-phenology
  • Indigenous (local) knowledge
  • Rice farming
  • Tsunami

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts
  • Anthropology
  • Religious studies
  • Literature and Literary Theory

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