The ubiquity of water is demonstrated in almost everything we come into contact with. It’s responsible for everyday objects like blue jeans, bread, and coffee, it rushes through pipes below our feet, is necessary for industrial violence like fracking, mapped through watersheds, exists as a healing modality, and is also a great source of pleasure - yet most of us take water for granted as a mundane necessity, rarely stopping to look at how tightly water is woven into politics, science, and the economy. This week on the podcast we look at the power and ubiquity of water in a world where it is becoming scarce with guest Andrea Ballestero. Andrea explores the tensions that exist between a human right and a commodity, water futures, pricing mechanisms, the fallacy of rationing and block pricing, and water scarcity. Andrea Ballestero is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Rice University and she is also the founder and director of the Ethnography Studio. Her background includes a law degree, training in Natural Resource Policy, and a Ph.D. in anthropology. Her recent book, A Future History of Water, examines the daily work of implementing the human right to water in Costa Rica and in Northeast Brazil. This book is open access and available for download for free on her website. Dr. Ballestero is currently researching cultural imaginaries of the underground in Costa Rica, particularly aquifers. Her research and all of her publications can be found at https://andreaballestero.com/.
Music by The Pit-Yak Aiodoi, Palo-Mah (Suculima), and Jahnavi Veronica.
Visit our website at forthewild.world for the full episode description, references, and action points.