Junior Scholar Speaker Series

Tuesday, November 19, 2013
4:30 PM - 5:30 PM
McLaren Conference Center 252 - Venue
Event Type
Events and Lectures
Sikes, James

Black Faces, White Spaces: Reimagining the Relationship of African Americans to the Great Outdoors

Carolyn Finney, Assistant Professor of Society and Environment University of California—Berkeley

Why are African Americans so underrepresented when it comes to interest in nature, outdoor recreation, and environmentalism? Bridging the fields of environmental history, cultural studies, critical race studies, and geography suggests that the legacies of slavery, Jim Crow, and racial violence have shaped today’s cultural understandings of the "great outdoors" and determined who should and can have access to natural spaces. Film, literature, popular culture, and analysis of different historical moments, including the establishment of the Wilderness Act in 1964 and the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, reveal the perceived and real ways in which nature and the environment are racialized in America.


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