Tune in here to listen to Dr. Andrea Duffy’s podcast interview with Matthew Brown, New Books Network Host.
Chronicling the retreat of mobile pastoralization from Mediterranean coastlines, Andrea Duffy’s Nomad’s Land: Pastoralism and French Environmental Policy in the Nineteenth-Century Mediterranean World (U Nebraska Press, 2019) investigates a mystery: where did the sheep go? Duffy seeks the answer by exploring the relationship between forestry policy and pasteurization by comparing and contrasting the implementation of French Forestry in France’s Provence, French colonial Algeria, and Ottoman Anatolia. Anxieties over deforestation drove the French forestry regime to marginalize active transhumant pastoral communities around the inner sea while altering imperial institutions and Mediterranean landscapes. The focus on the Mediterranean engages with a transnational study exhibiting the visible and invisible patterns and distinctions over time and shared space. Overstepping the political divisions among states highlights the geographical and ecological features framing the importance of diverging geographical and ecological features helpful in studying environmental studies. The Mediterranean framework of her argument works to investigate social and cultural connections while cutting across traditional political and ideological frontiers. An accessible, well-researched, and well-organized Nomad’s Land demonstrates the legacy of Scientific Forestry, which contributed to the decline of forests and mobile pastoralism, reshaped traditional lands into a modern Mediterranean World.