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The sea and men. Territories, practices and identities

La mer et les hommes. Territoires, pratiques et identités

Revue internationale d'ethnographie no. 5

Revue internationale d'ethnographie n° 5

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Published on Wednesday, July 09, 2014 by João Fernandes


De tout temps, les populations se sont rassemblées dans les cités portuaires et sur les espaces littoraux. Autrefois réservée à la pêche, au commerce et aux opérations militaires, la mer est devenue depuis plus de deux siècles, espace de loisir et objet de recherche. Mer et littoral prennent une importance croissante dans les pratiques et les enjeux de l’humanité. Il s’agit donc, aujourd’hui et demain, de l’exploiter de façon productive et dans un souci de durabilité. Ces enjeux, sources d’activités sociales, d’innovations (technologiques, socioéconomiques) et de conflits (locaux, internationaux), méritent qu’anthropologues, sociologues, économistes, historiens, géographes, juristes, littéraires, s’intéressent à ce monde gigantesque, dans un rapport interdisciplinaire avec les sciences biologiques, halieutiques ou océanographiques.



The sea and the coastline are becoming increasingly important in the practices and issues of humankind. The population is massively gathering in port cities and on coastal spaces. Formerly reserved for fishing, trade and military operations, the sea has become a leisure space and the subject of research for more than two centuries. We must now exploit it in a productive and sustainable way.

To know more about the sea and to exploit it, men have built knowledge, implemented techniques, developed magico-religious explanations or scientific theories that have shaped the identity of seafarers, confronted – that’s what mostly defines them - with the danger of an unstable physical world and the ups and downs of a specific halieutic and maritime economy.

Social and human sciences have been working around coastal populations for more than a century and must now help to a better comprehension of the pair sea/men. The sea is not only a vast expanse of water; it is also a world which has been one with man since they have lived on the Earth. The sea is also a vital territorial, economic and identity issue. Seamen and non seamen depend on it. These issues, source of social activities, technological, social and economic innovations, local and international conflicts, deserve the interest of anthropologists, sociologists, economists, historians and geographers, in an interdisciplinary relation to biological, halieutic or oceanographic sciences.

This first main theme will deal with the problematic of maritime anthropology, its ethnographic fields and its methods; maritime techniques or fishing issues, highlighting the distinctive nature of the marine environment, knowledge and skills, fishermen’s and merchant seamen’s training, bearing in mind the growing influence of national and European policies, the globalization (of fishing policies, maritime transport, ...) that disrupt or endanger the identities of the maritime professional communities, in short the maritime cultures.

Keywords: maritime anthropology, methodology, knowledge and training, Europe and globalization, culture and identity.

The second main theme will study, thanks to the folklore and the scientific analysis of maritime anthropology, how men and women along the coast have created legends and myths specific to the marine environment and pagan, magic and religious rituals which have often coexisted with monotheist religions. Contributions will possibly deal with the relation between seamen and religion and the evolution of this relation in the last decades (maritime ex votos, maritime chaplains, beliefs and practises, etc...) Keywords: Religion, pagan rituals, magic and religion, legends and myths.

The third main theme will approach the subject of the physical (sinking) and economic risk associated with the state of the fishery resources; markets linked with sustainable development policies; maritime transport markets (cargo and passengers). These hazards pose the question of economic management (marketing and tourist activities), use conflicts and disputes between maritime territories. A diachronic and synchronic study is needed referring to piracy we thought gone but has resurfaced in the 1990s (in Africa, Indonesia). On top of this risk one has to add the fear aroused in men, seamen and non seamen, by the sea and the various attempts to dominate it, that will be discussed in a multidisciplinary approach bringing together historians, geographers, political scientists and lawyers.

Keywords: hazards, sinking, risk, piracy, maritime crime, fear.

The fourth main theme will evoke maritime and sporting achievements, ordinary sailing (yachting, sailing) and its development, relations between recreational fishermen and professional fishermen, analysed through the study in the field of the social representations of the professional or recreational fishermen, in reality and different media. Media campaigns of environmental NGOs faced with professional fishermen and their place in the decisions of fishing policies will be discussed as well as representations of the sea and sailors in the literature, poetry or work songs of sailors, in the folklore or the festivals related to the maritime heritage, that we will put forward along with the reality of every day life and seamen’s practises thanks to the ethnographic survey.

Keywords: maritime exploits, navigators, maritime scientific research, yachting, environmentalists, literature, social representations.

The fifth main theme will be ecological: political and environmental conflicts related to land and natural areas management, urban planning, heritage and health management, etc. The issues of society-environment relationships in a coastal context (dune destruction, uncontrolled urbanization of floodplains) is studied as well as the impact of man on the natural environment through its polluting constructions (oil rigs, wind farms at sea), his various forms of exploitation and overexploitation of their natural resources (quotas, whaling) and actions (discards, hydrocarbon spills) and other violations of international guidelines.

Keywords: human, marine and animal ecology, pollution, protected areas and species at risk, coast, exclusive economic zone, quota, ecological policy, defense association.

The contributions to this No. 5 of the Revue Internationale d’Ethnographie (International Journal of Ethnography) should reflect the importance of the relationship between humans and the marine component. Derived from ethnographic research and / or studies supported by a thorough knowledge of the field, they will describe the activities and practices illustrating the intimate relationship between the sea and the coastal populations, and will lead to a general reflection on the theme addressed. They will mention the methodology implemented and if necessary the epistemological aspects specific to science dealing with the relationship between man and this environment.

Estimated timetable

  • deadline for submission:

    October 1st, 2014 

  • January 31th, 2015: end of the examination of items by the reading committee. The submission is subjected to an anonymous peer review by two referees. Transmission to the authors of the validation or not of the proposals.
  • March 15th, 2015: end of corrections of articles by authors
  • June 30th, 2015: online issue of number 5

Dradfting standards

The authors undertake to submit original papers that have not been published previously.
Respect for linguistic diversity is a feature of the RIE publication. Authors are free to choose the language in which they wish to write their text.

Articles (from 30,000 to 40,000 signs, including spaces and references) in attached file in WORD "doc." format, Times Roman 12, single spaced.
The articles are accompanied by 3 summaries - 1 in the language of Article (2000 signs), one in English and another language (1500-2000 signs, each for the last two) each with 5 keywords.

A biography record (2-5 lines) followed by an email from the author or authors is to write and place at the beginning of the text.

APA bibliographic standards


  • Viemeister, N. F. (1979). Temporal modulation transfer functions based upon modulation thresholds. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 66, 1364-1380.
  • Takahashi, G. A., & Bacon, S. P. (1992). Modulation detection, modulation masking, and speech understanding in noise in the elderly. Journal of Speech and Hearing Research, 35, 14101421.


  • Moore, B. C. J. (1995). Perceptual Consequences of Cochlear Damage. Oxford: Oxford University press.

Book chapter:

  • Viemeister, N. F., & Plack, C. (1993). Time analysis. In W. Yost, A. Popper, & R. Fay (Eds.), Human Psychophysics (pp. 116‐154). New‐York: Springer‐Verlag.
  • Rodenburg, M. (1977). Investigation of temporal effects with amplitude modulated signals. In E. F. Evans, & J.P. Wilson (Eds), Psychophysics and Physiology of Hearing (pp. 429‐437). London: Academic Press.

Web document:

  • Family Health International (n.d.). Cours de formation sur l'éthique de la recherche. Récupéré le 2 novembre 2004 du site de l'organisme: http://www.fhi.org/fr/pubtraf/trainmultf.html
  • Faraco, M. (2002). Répétition, acquisition et gestion de l'interaction sociale en classe de L2. Acquisition et interaction en langue étrangère (AILE), 16, 97-120. Récupéré du site de la revue : http://aile.revues.org/document788.html


You must give the name of the author and date of publication in the text.

Three options:

  • « A recent study by Strickland and Viemeister (1996) showed...
  • « In 1996 Strickland and Viemeister showed... »
  • « One study showed (Strickland and Viemeister, 1996)... »

Two authors, cite both names every time. 3 to 5 authors:
The first time you need to cite all authors

  • Eg: « Yost, Sheft et Opie (1989) showed...»
  • Eg: « D’autres auteurs (Yost, Sheft, & Opie, 1989)... »

Then only the name of the first author followed by "et al." Eg: Yost et al. (1989)

Multiple citations:

  • Use the order of the bibliography.
  • Separate the different authors with a semicolon
  • Separate the dates of the various works by the same author with a comma. Eg: several studies (Dorrow & O'Neal, 1979; Murray, 1970, 1985)...

Proposals shall be to be sent to: chrisesc@uma.pt & denis-biget@orange.fr


Christine Escallier, Universidade da Madeira, Portugal, chrisesc@uma.pt

Denis Biget, Université de Bretagne occidentale, France, denis-biget@orange.fr R

Revue internationale d'ethnographie


  • Wednesday, October 01, 2014


  • mer, territoire, identités


  • Gilles Pinte
    courriel : gilles [dot] pinte [at] univ-ubs [dot] fr

Information source

  • Gilles Pinte
    courriel : gilles [dot] pinte [at] univ-ubs [dot] fr

To cite this announcement

« The sea and men. Territories, practices and identities », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Wednesday, July 09, 2014, https://calenda.org/291504

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