The role of fishing material culture in communities’ sense of place as an added-value in management of coastal areas

Research paper by Sorna Khakzad, David Griffith

Indexed on: 28 Nov '16Published on: 19 Nov '16Published in: Journal of Marine and Island Cultures


Publication date: Available online 15 November 2016 Source:Journal of Marine and Island Cultures Author(s): Sorna Khakzad, David Griffith Fishing communities in many places around the world are facing significant challenges due to new policies and environmental developments. While it is imperative to ensure sustainability of natural resources, many policies may overlook the contribution of fisheries to the sociocultural well-being of coastal communities. Authors address the problem of valuing the sociocultural benefits of fishing by exploring the role of fishing landscapes and traditional working waterfronts in maintaining sense of place in fishing communities. The paper explores how sense of place contributes to understanding the relationship between fishing and cultural-ecosystem services, drawing on case studies from four U.S. fishing communities in Brunswick County, North Carolina. Through semi-structured and in-depth interviews with fishing communities members, resident photography and sites visits, this paper outlines how fishing contributes to sense of place in terms of place-attachment and cultural-social memory. By understanding the relationship between fishers’ sense of place, and the physical environment in fishing communities in Brunswick County, the authors identify the complexity and interrelated elements that shape the relationship between fishermen and their cultural landscape. The paper suggests that realizing the value of fishing cultural landscape can encourage policies that promote preservation of fishing cultural heritage for the sociocultural benefit of communities.