Speaking with authority: gender and Indigenous politics in the Mount Polley Mine Disaster

Date

2019-09-11

Authors

McAllister, Shianna

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Abstract

This thesis explores the role of authority and how Indigenous people have been gravely impacted throughout the 2014 Mount Polley Mine Disaster. Through critical engagement of political theory, environmental racism, and Indigenous Nationhood, I offer an analysis of the disaster that asks: How do we construct, accept, and uphold notions of authority in the Mount Polley Mine Disaster? I answer this by conducting a discourse analysis informed by Kwakwaka’wakw geographer Sarah Hunt’s colonialscape, Environmental historian Traci Brynne Voyles’s wastelanding, and Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben’s spatiolegal concepts of the state of exception and bare life. To conclude, I will provide an alternative understanding of authority that is grounded in Indigenous feminist approaches that can better represent what authority should look like.

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Keywords

colonialism, settler colonialism, resource extraction, Mount Polley Mine Disaster

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