I write about the strange and often volatile relations between environmentalism, science, theory, literature, art, popular culture and gender. My concept of trans-corporeality links material feminism, new materialism, and environmental posthumanism. I am currently writing about how the aesthetic crosses through the science, art, and literature of the seas, especially the deep seas.
Environmental justice, environmental health, and material feminisms occupy the "trans-corporeal" sites where body, place, and substance intersect. Bodily Natures: Science, Environment and the Material Self (Indiana 2010) won the ASLE Book Award and was featured in a New Books Network Interview. [Cover art: "Toxic Girl," Fawazo.]
Undomesticated Ground (Cornell 2000) draws on poststructuralist feminist theory and cultural studies, advocating gender-minimizing, intersectional feminisms that recast nature as feminist space. Darwinian feminists, Marxist feminists, birth control activists, postmodern artists and novelists, and queer writers reinvent the concept of "nature." [Cover art: Ana Mendieta.]
NEW! Exposed: Environmental Politics and Pleasures in Posthuman Times (Minnesota 2016) contends that the anthropocene is no time to set things straight. The book resists the temptation to engage in any sort of grand mapping that would be inimical to the embedded modes of epistemological, ethical, and political engagement that it traces, working instead through a surprising mix of theory, science, art, and activism. It begins by considering the pleasures of inhabiting places where the domestic refuses to domesticate and the walls decline to divide. It ends with an imaginary inhabitation of the dissolving shells of sea creatures who epitomize extinction in anthropocene seas. Along the way it considers queer animals, naked protests, the strange agencies of plastic pollution, and the gendered politics of climate change. Dwelling in the dissolve, where fundamental boundaries have begun to come undone, unraveled by unknown futures, can be a mode of ethical engagement and political inhabitation, which emanates from both feminist and environmentalist practices. Exposed locates new materialisms and material feminisms in fleeting ethical moments and compromised political sites that make up the massive temporal and geographical expanse of the anthropocene.[Cover art: Marina Zurkow, video still from "Slurb."]
Current Project: Composing Blue Ecologies: Science, Aesthetics, and the Creatures of the Abyss, investigates the science, art, film, and literature of deep sea creatures, asking what modes of recognition and reorientation these unfathomable creatures may spark. It traces how marine animals circulate through science, popular culture, and conservation movements, considering the relation between scientific capture, aesthetic rendering, and the possibilities for posthuman politics.
Podcasts and blogs about Exposed:
Podcast interview with Katie McKeown, New Books in Environmental Studies, New Books Network
Culture of Energy Podcast, #39, with Cymene Howe and Dominic Boyer