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Sittler Defends MA with SoA and BARA Committee

The SoA and BARA congratulate Christopher E. Sittler on his successful defense of his M.A. thesis in Latin America Studies, “The Last Fishermen: Identity, Risk, and Reproduction of Artisanal Fishers on the Utila Cays.” Grounded in ethnographic fieldwork with multiple fishing families residing on Utila Cays, situated off mainland Honduras, the thesis synthesizes perspectives from classics of environmental anthropology, theories risk perception, and traditional ecological knowledge. It argues that the lives, livelihoods, and local expertise of artisanal fishers are too often overlooked by natural resource managers as they seek to mitigate global pressures on fish stocks and marine ecosystems. At the same time, the thesis gives an account of transformations in fishing vocations, as the younger cohorts draw on intergenerational knowledge in a pivot towards work in ecotourism, even as the sector tends to exclude them in favor of a mobile nonlocal workforce. During the defense, Sittler engaged in a lively debate with his thesis advisor, Dr. Richard Stoffle, and committee members Dr. Marcela Vásquez-León, Dr. Ben Colombi, and Dr. Noah Pleshet. (Anthro News date: 10/18/2019)