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The social processes of acquiring the knowledge and skills employed by community members as ‘community of practices’ are different from those of their original communities. These communities have a kinship system and have inherited their own culture over many years to the present day. ‘Community of practices’ are created by members who participate in their community’s activities, and they are meaningful to their lives. The communities of the integrated ridging fruit orchard farmers at Tambon Meuang Mai, Amphawa district, Samut Songkhram province in the Mae Klong Ecosystem have developed knowledge and adaptations that have enabled them to cope with the capitalist system. The farmers “community of practices”, when faced by a changing society, were studied. Qualitative research methods and a farm household data-survey were employed. These farmers have learned about ecology and developed integrated, ridging fruit orchard systems from their participation in community practices; creating relationships through knowledge exchange and interaction with the market. The concept of ‘community of practices’ is useful when trying to understand the dynamic of these farmers’ interaction with the capitalist system and industrialization in the Mae Klong Ecosystem. This paper will show how the fruit orchard farmers work together to create a new form of community which is different from communities in the orthodox sociological and anthropological perspectives.
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