chapter  7
20 Pages

'The Social Exchange of Land, Cloth, and Development in Irian Jaya'

Themodemindustrialistassumptionthatindividualpropertyrightstolandpromoteeconomic

developmentisnowwidelydispersed,notleastduetoWorldBankpressureondeveloping

countries.Thecapitalistideologythat,especiallysince1989,hasdominatedtheglobal

economy,isbasedonthepremiseoftheexistenceofdirectrelationshipsbetweenmenand

things,forwhichtheexistenceofthenotionofindividual,butimpersonal,property

relationshipsisfundamental.YetinthePacific,likeelsewhereinSoutheastAsiaandin

Africa,conditionslikethosedescribedbyBohannanaremoreappropriate:'Themost

importantfeatureoftheWesternsystemisthatitassumesthatrightsofpeopletospaceandto

exploittheenvironmenthaveautomaticallyastheircounterparts,rightsinland.Thuswe

assumethatforeveryman-manunitwithaspatialdimensionorarighttoexploitationthere

automaticallygoesaman-thingunit...thisispreciselynotthecaseinAfrica'(Bohannan 1963:103).