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      Batwa Indigenous peoples forced eviction for “Conservation”: A qualitative examination on community impacts

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          Abstract

          In 1991, the Ugandan government formally established National Parks within the ancestral homelands of the Batwa Peoples. No consultation was carried out with local Batwa communities, and they were consequently forcibly evicted from their Forest home. With this, we sought to better understand the impacts of forced Land eviction through the lens of solastalgia. Nineteen semi-structured interviews were carried out with adult Batwa Peoples of varying age and gender in Uganda from August to November 2022. Interviews were transcribed verbatim, and thematic analysis was carried out on the interview transcripts to identify themes from the initial codes. Four overarching themes were identified, including: 1) Our love and connection with the Forest; 2) What was left in the Forest when we were evicted; 3) What eviction from the Forest did to us as Batwa Peoples; and 4) Batwa People’s Landback and returning to the Forest (‘Indigenous Lands back into Indigenous hands’). As movement towards the global “30 by 30” conservation agenda occurs, we urge researchers, policy makers, and leaders to listen to the voices of Indigenous Peoples like the Batwa with a key focus on Landback and movement towards a clearer understanding and appreciation of the impacts of Western conservation agendas on Indigenous Peoples globally.

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          Using thematic analysis in psychology

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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Role: ConceptualizationRole: Data curationRole: Funding acquisitionRole: InvestigationRole: MethodologyRole: Project administrationRole: SupervisionRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: ConceptualizationRole: Data curationRole: InvestigationRole: MethodologyRole: Project administrationRole: SupervisionRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: ConceptualizationRole: InvestigationRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: InvestigationRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: InvestigationRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: ConceptualizationRole: Funding acquisitionRole: Project administrationRole: ResourcesRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: MethodologyRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: Data curationRole: Formal analysisRole: MethodologyRole: Project administrationRole: SoftwareRole: SupervisionRole: Writing – original draftRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: Editor
                Journal
                PLOS Glob Public Health
                PLOS Glob Public Health
                plos
                PLOS Global Public Health
                Public Library of Science (San Francisco, CA USA )
                2767-3375
                16 August 2023
                2023
                : 3
                : 8
                : e0002129
                Affiliations
                [1 ] Action for Batwa Empowerment Group, Kanungu District, Uganda
                [2 ] Bwindi Community Hospital, Community Health and Batwa Department, Kanungu, Uganda
                [3 ] Minority Rights Group, London, United Kingdom
                [4 ] The Hub at Wellcome Collection, London, United Kingdom
                [5 ] Department of Human Development and Relational Sciences, Faculty of Interdisciplinary Studies, Mbarara University of Science and Technology, Mbarara, Uganda
                [6 ] African Population and Health Research Center, Nairobi, Kenya
                [7 ] Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, Western University, London, Ontario, Canada
                University of Canberra, AUSTRALIA
                Author notes

                The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.

                Author information
                https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1364-4919
                https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8521-2130
                Article
                PGPH-D-23-00759
                10.1371/journal.pgph.0002129
                10431614
                37585374
                3c392cce-f067-4af0-9388-5376c61f90e9
                © 2023 Kokunda et al

                This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

                History
                : 28 April 2023
                : 6 July 2023
                Page count
                Figures: 1, Tables: 1, Pages: 15
                Funding
                Funded by: funder-id http://dx.doi.org/10.13039/100010269, Wellcome Trust;
                Award ID: 220767/Z/20/Z
                This work was supported by the Wellcome Trust (#220767/Z/20/Z to SG). The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
                Categories
                Research Article
                Biology and Life Sciences
                Ecology
                Ecosystems
                Forests
                Ecology and Environmental Sciences
                Ecology
                Ecosystems
                Forests
                Ecology and Environmental Sciences
                Terrestrial Environments
                Forests
                Biology and Life Sciences
                Nutrition
                Diet
                Food
                Medicine and Health Sciences
                Nutrition
                Diet
                Food
                Biology and Life Sciences
                Neuroscience
                Cognitive Science
                Cognitive Psychology
                Language
                Biology and Life Sciences
                Psychology
                Cognitive Psychology
                Language
                Social Sciences
                Psychology
                Cognitive Psychology
                Language
                Social Sciences
                Anthropology
                Indigenous Populations
                People and Places
                Demography
                Indigenous Populations
                Biology and Life Sciences
                Organisms
                Eukaryota
                Plants
                Trees
                Social Sciences
                Political Science
                Governments
                Political Parties
                Science Policy
                Biology and Life Sciences
                Ecology
                Forest Ecology
                Ecology and Environmental Sciences
                Ecology
                Forest Ecology
                Custom metadata
                Due to Indigenous ethical considerations and Indigenous data sovereignty, any data and materials associated with this research will not be available unless additional relevant Indigenous ethics agreements are in place with the local community. Please contact Tumuhimbise Ishmael from the Action for Batwa Empowerment Group at tumuhimbiseishmael@ 123456gmail.com for any data requests pertaining to this study.

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