Riverhood: political ecologies of socionature commoning and translocal struggles for water justice

Rutgerd Boelens, Arturo Escobar, Karen Bakker, Lena Hommes, Erik Swyngedouw, Barbara Hogenboom, Edward H. Huijbens, Sue Jackson, Jeroen Vos, Leila M. Harris, K. J. Joy, Fabio de Castro, Bibiana Duarte-Abadía, Daniele Tubino de Souza, Heila Lotz-Sisitka, Nuria Hernández-Mora, Joan Martínez-Alier, Denisse Roca-Servat, Tom Perreault, Carles Sanchis-IborDiana Suhardiman, Astrid Ulloa, Arjen Wals, Jaime Hoogesteger, Juan Pablo Hidalgo-Bastidas, Tatiana Roa-Avendaño, Gert Jan Veldwisch, Phil Woodhouse, Karl M. Wantzen

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle in an indexed scientific journalpeer-review

    52 Scopus citations


    Mega-damming, pollution and depletion endanger rivers worldwide. Meanwhile, modernist imaginaries of ordering ‘unruly waters and humans’ have become cornerstones of hydraulic-bureaucratic and capitalist development. They separate hydro/social worlds, sideline river-commons cultures, and deepen socio-environmental injustices. But myriad new water justice movements (NWJMs) proliferate: rooted, disruptive, transdisciplinary, multi-scalar coalitions that deploy alternative river–society ontologies, bridge South–North divides, and translate river-enlivening practices from local to global and vice-versa. This paper's framework conceptualizes ‘riverhood’ to engage with NWJMs and river commoning initiatives. We suggest four interrelated ontologies, situating river socionatures as arenas of material, social and symbolic co-production: ‘river-as-ecosociety’, ‘river-as-territory’, ‘river-as-subject’, and ‘river-as-movement’.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1125-1156
    Number of pages32
    JournalJournal of Peasant Studies
    Issue number3
    StatePublished - 2023

    Bibliographical note

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.


    • Environmental justice
    • disruptive co-production
    • hydrosocial territories
    • ontological complexity
    • river commoning
    • translocal movements

    Types Minciencias

    • Artículos de investigación con calidad A1 / Q1


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