Journal of Alpine Research / Revue de géographie alpine

Small Farmers in the Mountains and Forests of the Hinterlands Located North and South of the Mediterranean Sea. Contexts, Constraints and Strategies

Brief For centuries, small farmers (SFs) have made their living in the mountainous and forested areas of the Mediterranean hinterland, away from centres of power. These places have historically been places of refuge for the populations driven out from the plains – the excluded, the damned and the rebellious looking for means to subsist and resist (Braudel, 1966, Debarbieux, 2001). Nowadays, the SFs in the mountains and the forests, which have become more mixed and gradually more part of national entities, are paradoxically suffering from geographical remoteness and economic and social marginality. And yet, beyond the physical and the cultural environments’ diversity and the relationships forged with the urbanised foreland, these same communities are developing adaptive practices on the basis of specific features that continue to be sensitive to various kinds of risk and uncertainty that public policy is unable to diminish. Environmental constraints vs. multi-activity and multifunction...

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