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School of Environment and Natural Resources


Graduate Exit Seminar - Kathryn Finneran

Plan to join Kathryn Finneran's graduate exit seminar on May 4, 2022, at 11:00 a.m. via Zoom. Kathryn will present, "Reclamation of Agency in the Ohio River Valley: Towards an Eco-Crip Theory of Critical Trauma."

An exploration of the impacts of the transition away from coal in three Appalachian Ohio case study communities that have experienced past and recent closures of their local coal facilities: Noble County's Central Ohio Coal Corporation (closed 2001), Belmont County's R.E. Burger Power Plant (closed 2011) and Coshocton County's AEP Conesville Power Plant (closed 2020). This thesis explores the way these transitions are environmentally shaped by complex community trauma through the application of an eco-cripistemological framework - one that combines environmental humanities to disability and critical trauma studies as well as to critical race theory. Contextualizing coal transitions in Appalachia through this lens can help foster appreciation for how so many of the people who live in these spaces experience disability and trauma not just as a biomedical condition, but as a collectively cultural and political issue. This framing can help confront normative assumptions of worth and productivity and move to assert agency and autonomy in a region that has been so deeply paternalized and constrained by the logic of transnational extractive capitalism.

Advisor: Dr. Jeffrey Jacquet