Iva Lucic: "Timber Colonialism without Colonies. Forest Exploitation in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the Era of Empires 1850-1918

  • Datum: –15.00
  • Plats: Engelska parken 6-3025 (Rausingrummet)
  • Arrangör: Institutionen för idéhistoria
  • Kontaktperson: Hanna Hodacs
  • Seminarium

Högre seminariet i idéhistoria

Forskningspresentation av Iva Lucic, Pro Futura Scientia Fellow, SCAS, Stockholm University. 


The lecture proposes an environmental perspective on the Habsburg imperial governance. It does so by bringing the question of access to natural resources, in this case timber, into the frame of imperial governance formation, which is analyzed from the perspective of property relations, timber export, and the political economy of the Habsburg Empire. It proposes the concept of Timber Colonialism for illustrating a web of colonialist type of dependencies without official colonialism. It illustrates how a steering mechanism of late Habsburg governance in Bosnia was the homogenizing logic of the global capitalist market as well as Austria-Hungary’s urge to secure its place as a major timber exporter on the global market. Its mode of timber colonialism involved the participation and intersection of multiple actors and interest groups in different places including Habsburg politicians, French merchants, Italy as a country and a major consumer of Bosnian timber, Italian wood-processing firms, German and Austrian private capitalist enterprises. The Bosnian case invites for new approaches that de-center our analytical prisms by going beyond the imperial state as a framework for analyzing extraction-based colonialism. Instead, it is formed by a web of economic and ecological entanglements that go far beyond the geographies of the Habsburg Empire. It is the logic of these geographies that give us the true nature of imperial governance—a nature far more complex than a bidirectional metropole-colony or centre-periphery model.