Publications

Resignification practices of youth in zona da mata, Brazil in the transition toward agroecology

Goris, Margriet; Berg, Leonardo van den; Silva Lopes, Ivonete da; Behagel, Jelle; Verschoor, Gerard; Turnhout, Esther

Summary

Youth play an important role in the transition toward agroecology through practices of resignification. This article discusses how young people resignify agroecology by taking part in education initiatives that originate from social movements, and that aim to strengthen young peoples' abilities to reflect on their practices and realities. We used action research to create films with young agroecologists in the region of Zona da Mata Mineira, Brazil. Our analysis draws on films, interviews and participatory observations made during thirteen workshops to visualize the agroecological practices and visions of youth. We explore how social frames-e.g., the specific ways in which people understand reality-shape practices and how these frames are actively changed by youth. The findings show how frames are changed during (1) frame amplification by building on existing local values; (2) frame bridging by linking with other social movements; (3) frame extension by inclusion of new frames; and (4) frame transformation by altering the meaning of agroecology. We find that young people who engage with agroecology contribute to processes of repeasantization that rework local culture to be more inclusive of different populations, generations and genders, and that they foster an appreciation of the interconnectedness of humans and nature.