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Theses

Les réfractaires du désert : étude de la relation entre échanges de dons et économie marchande chez les habitants hivernaux du désert de La Posa, Arizona

Abstract : This thesis is based on an ethnography of the everyday life of the “réfractaires”. This term refers to aging people who have decided to escape from the exploitation of labor by leaving the sedentary lifestyle in favor of a mobile housing, and who settle each winter in the desert of La Posa, on the outskirts of the town of Quartzsite, in Arizona. These desert dwellers acquire goods from the city’s market economy on a daily basis, which they then exchange in the desert in the form of donations. Following the work of Marcel Mauss, this thesis analyzes the role of space in the articulation between gift exchange and market economy.In the first part, the thesis investigates how space allows the existence of a structure of gift exchange and how, dialectically, this structure produces space. We show that gift exchanges have a regulatory and reproductive function of space from one winter to the next.The second part moves to a broader scale and studies the relationship between the desert and the city via an ethno-accounting study carried out with two desert dwellers. By following their daily journeys and economic exchanges for ten days, and by studying what they count and how they count it, we show that their daily consumption is based on the cooperation of the two economic spaces, notably through the differentiated use of money. We then show that by relying on the consumption of goods, gift exchanges indirectly rely on labor, and thus reproduce forms of domination regarding the sexual division of labor.This thesis contributes to a better understanding of the phenomenon of gift-giving by studying a contemporary case in its relations, notably spatial, with the market economy in which it is embedded.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, June 22, 2022 - 12:30:14 PM
Last modification on : Friday, June 24, 2022 - 3:41:21 AM

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  • HAL Id : tel-03701639, version 1

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David Frati. Les réfractaires du désert : étude de la relation entre échanges de dons et économie marchande chez les habitants hivernaux du désert de La Posa, Arizona. Géographie. Université de Nanterre - Paris X, 2021. Français. ⟨NNT : 2021PA100139⟩. ⟨tel-03701639⟩

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