Drought & water supply
A History of Water series explores all aspects of water – social, cultural, political, religious, historical, economic and technological - from ancient times to the present day. The contributors examine the changing histories of water as a private or common good; the politics of water at local, urban, national and international level; water in cities; great river plans; dams; river biographies; and images of water in religion, myth, literature and art. Empirical and ethnographic case studies from around the world feature.
Volume I: Water Control and River Biographies
This book with narratives of water control from all over the world can give a vivid sense of a human past that in certain aspects can be seen as fundamentally shared. While there may be nothing that appropriately can be called universal values, water control is definitely a universal predicament. Water control in one form or another is one thing which all people at all times have had and will always have in common, and they will forever have to adapt to and to control, the water that runs through their societies.
Volume II: The Political Economy of Water
The contributors to this volume use a range of methods and hypotheses to probe the complexity inherent in the history of water and its provision. In measuring the extent to which provision went to one sector of the population rather than another, and the ramifications of this, Schmid and Hallström, for example, emphasise the utility of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) methodology, amongst a number of techniques they employ. Their study of Linkopping and Norkopping in Sweden constructs a spatial and temporal analysis which enables light to be shed on issues of unequal provision and its origins, and to track the development of water technologies and systems.
Volume III: The World of Water
This volume is an attempt to present the complex picture of how water has been conceptualized as a medium for control and social hierarchy, for understanding and cultural elaboration, and for religious and divine interaction, all interdependent spheres, each necessitating the other. Water is both nature and culture, and its profound character makes the substance unique in the context of social construction, having epistemological and ontological consequences for both the social and natural sciences. The chapters aim to convey the idea that with water as a point of departure it is possible to re-work dominant conceptual legacies about nature and society and 'realism' and 'constructivism' and to overcome the nature-society dualism in traditional analyses. Humans live in worlds of water: Water is used to define human life-worlds and the worlds are sustained through water.