Journal article Open Access

Water politics, violence, and injustice: experiences from Brazil, Guatemala, and Mexico

Castro, Jose Esteban; Kloster, Karina; de Morais, Hugo Belarmino; de Tavira, Ana Pohlenz; Fracchia Figueiredo, Myriam; Pelayo Pérez, Mariana Betzabeth

This is the second issue developed by members of the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network’s Thematic Area 10, Water and Violence. Research done by members of this TA focuses on how violence, whether systemic-structural, subjective, symbolic, or in any other of its many forms, has become the key mechanism through which the relations between human beings, and between humans and Nature, are de-structured and reconfigured, and new kinds of relations are created, producing new forms of territorial, social and political power and domination. TA10 aims to explore, examine, and contribute to a better understanding of the often-traumatic experiences emerging from these processes of social reordering, whose consequences of socio-ecological dispossession can be observed in the form of environmental deterioration and destruction of the material basis of life, and most notably in the case of water sources. Its objective is to also contribute towards the development of conceptual and methodological frameworks that place the emphasis on understanding and explaining how the use of violence as a mechanism has an impact in the evolving forms of water politics and management currently being implemented worldwide, particularly looking at the consequences of these processes, as well as at the potential alternatives to confront the rapid increase of inhuman and anti-democratic practices and discourses in the processes of water control and accumulation. Within this framework, the present issue, organized by Dr Karina Kloster, from the Autonomous University of Mexico City (UACM), includes four articles that are the result of ongoing research covering experiences of water-related violences and injustices identified in Brazil, Guatemala, and Mexico. Many of these events are the result of criminal activities carried out by governments’ security forces, illegal groups, and other violent actors, often working jointly to impose the appropriation of land, water, and other resources belonging to rural, indigenous and peasant communities. The issue is an important contribution to ongoing debates. We wish our readers a fruitful experience.

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