Stories of the land: Rhetoric and reconciliation in the Mojave National Preserve

Elisabeth M Infield, University of Pennsylvania


How does planning change when one takes seriously the stories told by participants in a planning debate? What are the connections between rhetoric, worldviews, conflict resolution, and participatory democracy? In seeking to address these questions, I develop a process ('interpretive planning') for both scholarly inquiry and potentially the practice of planning in situations of community conflict. This begins with the planner as facilitator of community members' discussions regarding contending visions of the good community, worldviews, and values. The issue's narratives illuminate these positions, and are used toward conflict resolution. The planner may also choose to reframe the debate, developing an alternative story for the situation which may not have been previously available. This reframed story then enters the conversation as another (non-privileged) interpretation.

Subject Area

Urban planning|Area planning & development|Environmental science|Communication

Recommended Citation

Infield, Elisabeth M, "Stories of the land: Rhetoric and reconciliation in the Mojave National Preserve" (1997). Dissertations available from ProQuest. AAI9727242.