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Amazon's dead ends: Frontier - making the centre.

Ioris, Antonio ORCID: 2018. Amazon's dead ends: Frontier - making the centre. Political Geography 65 , pp. 98-106. 10.1016/j.polgeo.2018.05.011

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The spatiality of frontier-making goes beyond the more immediate relocation from ‘core’ to ‘periphery’, entailing a deep relational interaction between old and new areas. The article discusses the interdependence between centre and frontier and suggests that this happens through the ‘law of scarcity-abundance’. This ‘law’ synthesizes the general tendency to deal with mounting scarcity in central areas through the pledge of abundance at the frontier, although in practice new rounds of scarcity emerge in both areas due to the internal dynamics of capitalism (notably, the exploitation of society and the rest of nature). This means that the evolution of capitalist relations of production and reproduction is also, and fundamentally, based on accumulation through frontier-making. This conceptual framework is then applied to Brazil, a country largely shaped by territorial conquest and the expansion of internal economic frontiers. The State of Mato Grosso, in the southern tract of the Amazon, has been at the forefront of frontier-making for many centuries, recently accelerated by the spiralling growth of neoliberalized agribusiness. Mato Grosso may have now reached the centre of the national political and economic landscape because of the crucial importance of agribusiness exports, nonetheless it remains a frontier space where abundance and scarcity continue to jointly materialize. Frontier-making never ended in Mato Grosso, but remains a persistent necessity, much more than a simple contingency.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0962-6298
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 May 2018
Date of Acceptance: 29 May 2018
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2023 06:01

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