Territories of life on the edge. Mediterranean mountain pastoral commons (I): Mirages
People in modern times have started questioning their own ways of life, trying to return and inhabit a lost world which once throbbed in harmony with Nature. But is that possible now, in this rapidly changing planet, so consumed by its own global dynamics, which most of us can barely grasp or have any control over?
Progress and transformation cannot be conceived as a linear process, but rather, as one moving in multidimensional spirals, eternally looping forward and backward, in continuous search for a sustainable livelihood. Some of these livelihoods are still around us, in our backyards, without us even realizing it. And these traditions hold examples that shouldn’t be overlooked or forgotten.
Small transhumant (mobile) pastoral populations who communally govern and conserve their own environments, are an enchanting example of this. These communities and their herds, provide some of the finest products and foods in the world, often unknown to other societies. And despite the many threats they face, through their finely evolved systems of pastoral governance, they remain guarantors and protectors of some of the most precious biodiversities and landscapes, still in place in the mountains of the Mediterranean.