Do Cattle Make Forests? An Investigation into Indigenous Ranching in Argentine Pampas, Working Wednesdays

Hybrid: Williams Hall, Room 623 and via Zoom

A blank and white photo of cattle in a field.

When settlers seized the Pampas grasslands of Argentina in the 16th century Indigenous peoples took to the hills west of the grasslands to survive, and it was in these marginal regions that cattle and horses gave them a new lease on life. Over the course of several centuries, Puelche learned to be consummate horsemen and cattlemen, and by the 18th century they had established several cattle trade routes around the western edge of the Pampas up the Andes and into Chile. This talk will examine the co-production of the landscape with cattle, what I am thinking of as "Indigenous Ranching," by tracing Indigenous survival with settler species and the worlds that emerge from this relation.

Rachel Cypher is a postdoctoral fellow with the Penn Program in Environmental Humanities. She received her BA from Penn, MA from Berkeley, and PhD from UCSC. She is currently finishing a manuscript on "becoming with" cattle and soy in the Anthropocene.

Headshot of Rachel Cypher

PPEH offers a lunch series, Working Wednesdays, designed to showcase in-progress Community Based Participatory Research (CBPR) straddling theoretical and practical environmental concerns. These sessions take place on Wednesdays, 12:30-1:30 sharp.

All sessions are open to the Penn community but require RSVP. Grab a lunch and join us in person or on Zoom!