Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.619188
Title: Plants, people and the politics of ethnobotanical knowledge in Nepal
Author: Adhikari, Kamal
ISNI:       0000 0004 5357 0066
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 2014
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Abstract:
This dissertation presents a detailed ethnobotanical documentation of the knowledge and use of medicinal plants by the inhabitants of a Tamang hill village in central Nepal. Based on 45 in-depth open-ended qualitative interviews and 115 household surveys, it shows that this knowledge and usage have altered in response to changes in knowledge resulting from increasing links with the outside world. Traditional domestic medical practice is in flux as a result of the introduction of allopathic medicines. The construction of a road to the village has changed agricultural practices and new crops have been introduced for sale. Basic needs which were previously met from the local forests now include commercial goods. Trading in plants is a way of raising the money needed to satisfy them. This can result in unsustainable practices in the utilisation of specific plant resources. The exploitation of plants is also influenced by government officials both at central level where policy is formulated and at district level where it is implemented. Policy and practice are influenced by domestic and foreign traders, and by foreign donor agencies. These processes are illustrated by a case study of sunakhari. This orchid is in high demand in China. The arrival of Chinese traders in the village altered local perceptions of this plant and patterns of behaviour. This study analyses the dynamics of the sunakhari trade and the complexity of its regulation. Corrupt practices in the forestry sector are revealed. The nature and operation of such practices in the exploitation of forest products is examined and its causes are identified. It argues that distribution of ethnobotanical knowledge at the three administrative levels influences the politics of knowledge and the structure of corruption. A map of ethnobotanical knowledge is created making apparent connections and interrelationships between factors underlying the ethnobotanical reality of contemporary Nepal.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Overseas Research Students Awards Scheme ; College of Arts and Social Sciences ; University of Aberdeen ; Rufford Foundation ; Hardy Plant Society
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.619188  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Ethnobotany
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