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Conflict, Heritage and World-Making in the Chaco: War at the End of the Worlds?

Breithoff, E; (2020) Conflict, Heritage and World-Making in the Chaco: War at the End of the Worlds? UCL Press: London, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

Conflict, Heritage and World-Making in the Chaco documents and interprets the physical remains and afterlives of the Chaco War (1932-35) – known as South America’s first ‘modern’ armed conflict – in what is now present-day Paraguay. It focuses not only on archaeological remains as conventionally understood, but takes an ontological approach to heterogeneous assemblages of objects, texts, practices and landscapes shaped by industrial war and people’s past and present engagements with them. These assemblages could be understood to constitute a ‘dark heritage’, the debris of a failed modernity. Yet it is clear that they are not simply dead memorials to this bloody war, but have been, and continue to be active in making, unmaking and remaking worlds – both for the participants and spectators of the war itself, as well as those who continue to occupy and live amongst the vast accretions of war matériel which persist in the present. Framing the study as an exploration of modern, industrialised warfare as Anthropocene ‘hyperobject’ (Morton 2013), This book shows how the material culture and heritage of modern conflict fuse together objects, people and landscapes, connecting them physically and conceptually across vast, almost unimaginable distances and time periods. She offers a unique perspective on the heritage of conflict, the natural environment, practices of recycling, the concept of time, and the idea of the ‘Anthropocene’ itself, as seen through the lens of the material legacies of war, which remain firmly and stubbornly embedded in the present and which continue to actively shape the future. It makes a major contribution to key debates in anthropology, archaeology, environmental humanities, critical heritage and material culture studies on the significance of conflict in understanding the Anthropocene, and the roles played by its persistent heritages in assembling worlds.

Type: Book
Title: Conflict, Heritage and World-Making in the Chaco: War at the End of the Worlds?
ISBN-13: 9781787358065
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.14324/111.9781787358065
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.14324/111.9781787358065
Language: English
Additional information: Text © Esther Breithoff, 2020 Images © Author and copyright holders named in captions, 2020 4.0). This licence allows you to share, copy, distribute and transmit the work; to adapt the work and to make commercial use of the work providing attribution is made to the authors (but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you or your use of the work). Attribution should include the following information: Breithoff, E. 2020. Conflict, Heritage and World-Making in the Chaco: War at the End of the Worlds? London, UCL Press. https://doi.org/10.14324/111.9781787358065 Further details about Creative Commons licences are available at http://creativecommons.org/licenses/ Any third-party material in this book is published under the book’s Creative Commons licence unless indicated otherwise in the credit line to the material. If you would like to re-use any third-party material not covered by the book’s Creative Commons licence, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder.
Keywords: Chaco War, Paraguay, conflict, archaeology
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Institute of Archaeology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10106703
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