سال انتشار: ۱۳۸۶

محل انتشار: سمینار بین المللی تاریخ آبیاری و زهکشی

تعداد صفحات: ۱۳

نویسنده(ها):

Maurits Ertsen – Water Resources, Delft University of Technology,
Joanne van der Spek – Water Resources, Delft University of Technology,

چکیده:

Much historical research conceptualizes irrigation technology as artefacts “without history”, as if artefacts enter society in a final shape. Forexample, many scholars assume that large ancient irrigation works were constructed in one phase, requiring strong central state supervision (based on the well-known hydraulic thesis of Wittfogel). It is more likely, however, that irrigation works emerged from purposeful but uncoordinated (series of) human activities. The two cases discussed in this paper illustrate these nuances of the Wittfogelian thesis. The case of the Pampa de Chaparrí (pre-Columbian Peru) shows that it is perfectly feasible that adaptations to water availability on scheme level were realized by individual farmers. The case of the Proyecto Río Dulce shows that large-scale irrigation development in this area needs to be understood in terms of series of actions by smaller groups of stakeholders within a context of changing positions of central state authority. This paper suggests that development (of management) of irrigation infrastructure needs to be understood as a longer term process, in which irrigation infrastructure becomes concrete through human action in continuous use, design and construction. Irrigation systems are result of actions and the material context of new actions. An historical perspective not only provides the data for optimization of models, but also helps to increase our
understanding of the nature of the relations between water availability and human intervention within natural environments.