Leisure battle on British rivers

Wastwater, the Lake District, England

Rounding out protection of September’s concern of Water Historical past, Marianna Dudley revealed “Muddying the waters: leisure battle and rights of use of British rivers”. The summary:

Rivers have traditionally been areas of recreation, along with work, commerce, and sustenance. As we speak, a number of teams (anglers, canoeists, rowers, swimmers) vie for the leisure use of rivers in Britain. However, this paper argues, authorized definitions of rights of use haven’t saved up with the expansion of leisure river use. Specializing in two teams, anglers and canoeists, it explores the emergence of battle between leisure customers of British rivers within the twentieth century, and subsequent campaigns for common public rights of navigation on inland waterways. On account of battle (actual and perceived), small-scale organized teams have re-conceptualized river areas in ways in which mirror a contemporary engagement with, and understanding of, water by means of recreation. This papers foregrounds recreation as a type of water-use that generates vital water-knowledge. Grounded within the Environmental Humanities, it attracts on notions of authorized geographies, ‘fashionable’ waters, and hydrocommons to recommend that small-scale conflicts on British rivers are difficult how we use, govern, and conceptualize river water.

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