Journal of the ...Volume 12 Issue 1 & 2 Development, su...
Normal View Dyslexic View

Research Article

Development, subtraction and the Indigenous peoples of Paraguay

orcid-imageAntonio A.R. Ioris*email-imageAntonio A.R. Ioris*

Antonio A.R. Ioris is a reader in political geography and director of the MSc in Environment and Development at the School of Geography and Planning, Cardiff University. Among his recent books are Kaiowcide: Living through the Guarani-Kaiowa Genocide (2021, Rowman and Littlefield) and Agriculture, Environment and Development: International Perspectives on Water, Land and Politics (2022, Springer). One of his main ongoing research projects is Guarani Beyond Borders: Healing Fragmentation and Sharing Indigeneity, supported by the British Academy.

email-image IorisA@cardiff.ac.uk

Abstract

This article deals with the very emblematic, but largely understudied, trajectory of national and local development in Paraguay, which is an example of a subtractive geography that produces spaces that are, in aggregate, less than before. Subtraction is an old driving force of nation-building as it connects the subtractive colonial past with the cultivated deserts of hyper-neoliberal agribusiness. The production of Paraguayan spaces has been based on the subtractive inclinations of its military–agrarian ruling elite, which compromised the national territory in tragic wars with regional neighbours and, since the end of the 19th century, the selling of land to foreigners and international companies. The subtractive pattern of a subordinate and aggressive capitalist development has been especially predicated upon the negation of the most fundamental rights and entitlements of Indigenous peoples. The discussion is based on research dedicated to understanding the struggle of the Paĩ Tavyterã Indigenous nation. Despite systematic denunciation of the anti-Indigenous direction of development by national and international organisations, the ancestral territories of the Paĩ Tavyterã have been under attack and they have been treated as generic citizens and cheap labourers. At the same time, the response of Indigenous peoples and other sectors of the working class has emerged in the form of anti-subtraction reactions. Decolonisation is, first and foremost, an anti-subtraction movement that aims at reverting the deficit caused by systemic subtraction and collectively seeking for social, political and spatial additions.

Keywords

developmentagribusinessIndigenous peoplesworking classPaĩ Tavyterãancestral territoriessubtractive geographyParaguay
View the PDF for the full text of this article
Published on: 22 May 2024
Volume: 12
Issue: Issue 1 & 2
Article ID: a05
Copyright statement
© The author(s) 2024.
Cite this article
Ioris (2024), ' Development, subtraction and the Indigenous peoples of Paraguay ', Journal of the British Academy, 12(Issue 1 & 2): a05 https://doi.org/10.5871/jba/012.a05

Related Articles

Research article

Normal View Dyslexic View

Development, subtraction and the Indigenous peoples of Paraguay

orcid-imageAntonio A.R. Ioris*email-imageAntonio A.R. Ioris*

Antonio A.R. Ioris is a reader in political geography and director of the MSc in Environment and Development at the School of Geography and Planning, Cardiff University. Among his recent books are Kaiowcide: Living through the Guarani-Kaiowa Genocide (2021, Rowman and Littlefield) and Agriculture, Environment and Development: International Perspectives on Water, Land and Politics (2022, Springer). One of his main ongoing research projects is Guarani Beyond Borders: Healing Fragmentation and Sharing Indigeneity, supported by the British Academy.

email-image IorisA@cardiff.ac.uk