La Habana: A History of Society, Livelihood, Movement, and Land Use on the Iquitos-Nauta Highway
With increasing infrastructural projects and land titling in the Peruvian Amazon, many changes are occurring within small roadside communities. In this case study, we investigate how these changes impact livelihoods, land use, travel patterns, and social relations within the broader concepts of development, privatization of land, and commodification of nature. Specifically we focus on the caserío La Habana situated on the Iquitos-Nauta highway in the Loreto region of Peru. Semi-formal
... mi-formal interviews and ethnographic methods were conducted to gather information on social organization, history of the community, land use practices, migration patterns, opinions on the road, and livelihood strategies. After data was collected it was analyzed and coded using excel and ArcGIS technology. We found that people moved to La Habana to connect with previously established family relations, job opportunities, and education services. The road was viewed as beneficial by all interviewed residents, but it was not recognized as the main draw to La Habana. Since the construction of the road, La Habana has undergone a series of adjustments including changes in livelihood strategies, including alterations in the balance between subsidence and income practices, and perceptions of land titles and land privatization. We conclude that increased infrastructural projects and privatization processes have large impacts on small caseríos both in physical changes and within the perceptions of their inhabitants.