Elise Boutié

Anthropologist specializing in hot topics

Coming from documentary cinema, Elise Boutié is now a doctoral student in social anthropology at EHESS, under the supervision of Birgit Müller. His research, carried out primarily in California, focuses on how environmental transformations force human collectives to readjust to a landscape they believed to be in control. His master’s thesis was devoted to the study of the effects of the privatization of water in a Californian desert where the use and scarcity of this resource today raise the question of its management from the perspective of the common good. His thesis now focuses on forest fires and the disaster they can cause. Starting from a field survey carried out in northern California, in the city of Paradise, it is for her to be interested in the way in which the inhabitants of this city of 27,000 souls located in a coniferous forest and destroyed by a mega-fire on November 8, 2018, are affected and react to the loss of their familiar habitat. From environmental collectives to members of the Evangelical Church, including the most vulnerable populations, his work raises the question of environmental justice in the neoliberal US context and borrows as much from the political anthropology of the environment as ‘to the anthropology of disaster.