Possession versus property in a tree plantation socioenvironmental conflict in Southern Cameroon

Julien François Gerber, Sandra Veuthey

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    10 Citations (Scopus)


    Industrial tree plantations are worldwide at the origin of a growing number of conflicts between local populations and commercial planters. This case study involves the resistance of local Bulu communities against a large-scale rubber tree plantation in Southern Cameroon. The aim is to understand the institutional roots of the conflict. The methods used are historical analysis and anthropological fieldwork. The Bulu logic of possession and use-value corresponds to a multifunctional forest management based on lineage institutions, individual productive investments, ecological cycles, and a broad metaphysical dimension. The economic logic based on Western-type property titles-enabling bank credit that generates specific pressures-gave birth to the industrial monoculture model. Commercial tree plantations are seen as the highest stage of the transformation of forest ecosystems in order to match the requirements of the financial economy in terms of repayment of interest and loans. © 2011 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)831-848
    JournalSociety and Natural Resources
    Issue number8
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2011


    • Bulu
    • Cameroon
    • Commons
    • Credit
    • Customary forest management
    • Environmental conflict
    • Industrial tree plantations
    • Institutional logic
    • Peasant resistance
    • Property economics


    Dive into the research topics of 'Possession versus property in a tree plantation socioenvironmental conflict in Southern Cameroon'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this