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Heritage 2018, 1(1), 122-141; https://doi.org/10.3390/heritage1010009

Abalone in Diasporic Chinese Culture: The Transformation of Biocultural Traditions through Engagement with the Western Australian Environment

1,†,* and 2,3,†
1
School of Arts and Humanities, Edith Cowan University, Mount Lawley, WA 6027, Australia
2
School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences, University of New England, Armidale, NSW 2351, Australia
3
School of Humanities, University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA 6009, Australia
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 15 May 2018 / Revised: 7 July 2018 / Accepted: 18 July 2018 / Published: 19 July 2018
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Abstract

In October 2017, the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development of Western Australia (WA) promulgated a new regulation on recreational abalone harvesting. A notable change was that, from 2017 on, the annual fishing season in the West Coast Zone was reduced to four days, from every December on Saturdays only. During the last decade, WA’s abalone fishing regulations have been overhauled frequently because of depleting local stocks. Worldwide, the marine heatwave resulting from climate change and illegal overfishing are considered the two principal reasons for abalone’s decline. Today, the highly lucrative abalone market has attracted more participants in recreational fishing in Perth, WA. Based on Asian natural heritage traditions and employing a multispecies sensory ethnographic methodology, this article provides an in-depth case study of the interaction between the local Chinese diaspora and the environment as represented in abalone harvesting practices. Between 2014 and 2016, the authors conducted one-on-one and focus group interviews with Chinese immigrants to Perth, WA, and also participated in abalone harvesting. The analysis reveals a suite of environmental influences on local Chinese diasporic life through heterogeneous forms of interaction between abalone and Perth-area Chinese immigrants. View Full-Text
Keywords: abalone; natural heritage; diasporic culture; food culture; nonhuman species; cross-cultural communication; cultural transformation abalone; natural heritage; diasporic culture; food culture; nonhuman species; cross-cultural communication; cultural transformation
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Chen, L.; Ryan, J.C. Abalone in Diasporic Chinese Culture: The Transformation of Biocultural Traditions through Engagement with the Western Australian Environment. Heritage 2018, 1, 122-141.

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