A licence for survival: exploring structure, agency and power within Newfoundland and Labrador's shellfish processing industry

Maddigan, Darryl (2009) A licence for survival: exploring structure, agency and power within Newfoundland and Labrador's shellfish processing industry. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

Following the 1992 cod moratorium, many fishing dependent communities on Newfoundland's Avalon Peninsula were forced to switch prey species in an attempt to achieve some measure of economic and social recovery. Many turned to harvesting shellfish, however, the shellfish industry provided fewer employment opportunities than the ground fishery, and subsequently, there was an increased demand for licences to process the newly targeted species. -- This thesis utilizes a case study to examine the process through which crab licences are allocated in Newfoundland and Labrador. More specifically, I conduct a sociological inquiry into how the licencing system operates by exploring the complex interplay between structure, agency, and power within the relationships of the system's three major players; communities, processing firms, and the provincial government. -- Utilizing an approach to structure, agency, and power similar to that of Anthony Giddens, Peter Berger, and Michel Foucault, as well as studies into small scale fishery survival, I propose a power hierarchy among the major social actors with communities at the bottom and the provincial government at the top. Position in the hierarchy is determined by the constraining and enabling effects of the social structure as well as each group's ability to access the social and cultural resources inherent to membership in their particular group. Additionally, I assert that the inability of communities to improve upon their position in the hierarchy is due in part to the persistence of clientelistic tendencies within the fishing industry.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/9076
Item ID: 9076
Additional Information: Includes bibliographical references (leaves 144-148)
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Sociology
Date: 2009
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Fishery management--Newfoundland and Labrador; Fishery processing industries--Licenses--Newfoundland and Labrador; Shellfish trade--Newfoundland and Labrador

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