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"Starvation taught me art": Tree poaching, gender and cultural shifts in wood curio carving in Zimbabwe

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Date Issued:
2008
Summary:
This study looks at wood curio carving in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, Africa. Although the local people, Ndebele and Shona, have always carved, they now face a weakened economy, due in large part to land reforms in 2000. Thus, more people sculpt wood as a form of livelihood. As one man said “Starvation taught me art”. As a result, gender roles are shifting as men and women begin to enter realms previously reserved for the other. Environmentally, carvers poaching trees deforests the woodlands. As more individuals turn to making crafts sustainability deteriorates. However, people are looking into more sustainable practices. Ndebele and Shona are experimenting with carving smaller items so as to be able to earn more profit from less wood, and to use branches instead of heartwood. Carvers are also using scrap wood from Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) lumber mills to lessen dependence on live trees.
Title: "Starvation taught me art": Tree poaching, gender and cultural shifts in wood curio carving in Zimbabwe.
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Name(s): Fadiman, Maria, creator
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Article
Date Issued: 2008
Publisher: Ethnobotany Research and Applications
Physical Form: application/pdf
Extent: 12 p.
Language(s): English
Summary: This study looks at wood curio carving in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, Africa. Although the local people, Ndebele and Shona, have always carved, they now face a weakened economy, due in large part to land reforms in 2000. Thus, more people sculpt wood as a form of livelihood. As one man said “Starvation taught me art”. As a result, gender roles are shifting as men and women begin to enter realms previously reserved for the other. Environmentally, carvers poaching trees deforests the woodlands. As more individuals turn to making crafts sustainability deteriorates. However, people are looking into more sustainable practices. Ndebele and Shona are experimenting with carving smaller items so as to be able to earn more profit from less wood, and to use branches instead of heartwood. Carvers are also using scrap wood from Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) lumber mills to lessen dependence on live trees.
Identifier: 165389 (digitool), FADT165389 (IID), fau:2005 (fedora)
FAU Department/College: Department of Geosciences Charles E. Schmidt College of Science
Note(s): This article is published in Ethnobotany Research & Applications v. 6 (2008) p. 335-346 http://www.erajournal.org/ojs/index.php/era/issue/view/24
Subject(s): Ethnobotany--Africa
Sustainable development--Zimbabwe
Culture--Africa
Wood sculpture, African
Forest conservation--Africa
Gender identity--Africa
Art, Zimbabwean
Sustainable development--Environmental aspects
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fau/165389
Use and Reproduction: ©2008 Maria Fadiman
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC-EDU/1.0/
Use and Reproduction: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/
Owner Institution: FAU