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Environmental Values

Contesting Death: Conservation, Heritage and Pig Killing in Far North Queensland, Australia

Carla Meurk

Environmental Values 24 (2015): 79-104. doi: 10.3197/096327115X14183182353827


What constitutes legitimate killing? How do our concerns over animal death fit with respect to our broader beliefs about the conservation or destruction of the ‘natural’ world? What does this mean for how we think about our own existence? This ethnography concerns itself with such questions as they have played out in a series of entangled conflicts with, and over, the non-human world; specifically, historically rooted tensions over the inception of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area in Queensland Australia and contemporary arguments over the ‘hunting’ and ‘management’ of feral pigs (Sus scrofa), an ‘exotic’ pest species. Similarities evident in the politics of natural heritage and animal death illuminate two distinct contemporary strategies for confronting existential struggles over life, death and destruction.


human-animal relationships, life and death, heritage, technologies, hunting, environmental conflict, endogenous and exogenous identities, vital politics

CITATIONS in other Environmental Values articles

Editorial: The Dying Planet Index: Life, Death and Man’s Domination of Nature. Clive L. Spash

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