Works in Progress

Lately, I’ve been working on some exciting projects. Danielle Endres and I just finished a book chapter about how dominant outdoor recreation discourses promote the notion that nature is where humans are not. In other words, when we see advertisements for gear and articles about the best hikes in the world, they emphasize the solitude and wildness of nature. This frame encourages outdoor recreators to venture further afield in search of “unspoiled” nature. Our position is that this can cause environmental degradation. We’re in the revision process now with the book editor.

I am also revising an essay that analyzes the rhetoric of maps and trails in Zion National Park. Although it can be useful to separate the material from the discursive, I take pleasure in reading material subjects discursively. Therefore, hiking trails appeal to me as artifacts because they seem natural and yet still communicate. I suggest in this essay that maps also function rhetorically. Together, maps and trails communicate positions on different tensions within this national park.

Danielle Endres, Brian Cozen, and I are analyzing a social action called Park(ing) Day to extend our theory of place in protest. When a place is in protest, it becomes an argument or evidence of an artifact. We focus on how temporal pieces of rhetoric can change the place. In this case, organizers pay for a parking spot on a street and transform it into a park using plants and other park-like items. Their purposes and messages differ but this strategy is the same.

I also just finished a review of Ecofeminism and Rhetoric. This book includes a variety of perspectives on ecofeminism and provides some useful perspectives about this discipline.

Look for these publications in the future!


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