Bios

Eduardo Kohn is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at McGill University and winner of the 2014 Gregory Bateson Prize for his book, How Forests Think: Toward an Anthropology Beyond the Human. His research is concerned with human-animal relations and the implications that the ethnographic study of these can have for rethinking anthropology. The empirical context for this work is his ongoing long-term research on how the Quichua-speaking Runa of Ecuador’s Upper Amazon inhabit the tropical forest and engage with its beings. His attempts to come to terms with these multi-species interactions lead to the development of an “anthropology of life”: the practice of a kind of anthropology that situates all-too-human worlds within a larger series of processes and relationships that exceed the human.

Paul Wapner is Professor of Global Environmental Politics in the School of International Service at American University.  His current research focuses on environmental ethics and climate suffering (the experience of those living on the frontlines of climate change).  He is the author or editor of five books.  His most recent is Reimagining Climate Change.  He co-leads workshops on contemplative environmentalism.

Elisabeth R. Anker is an associate professor of American Studies and Political Science at The George Washington University, where she conducts research in political theory, media studies, and US political discourse.   She is the author of Orgies of Feeling: Melodrama and the Politics of Freedom (Duke, 2014), which was a finalist for the 2015 Lora Romero Best First Book Prize in American Studies, and has published in Social Research, American Literary History, Political Theory, Politics and Gender, and Theory & Event.  Her new book project is titled titled “Ugly Freedoms.”

Website:

https://americanstudies.columbian.gwu.edu/elisabeth-anker

Tita Chico, Associate Professor of English at the University of Maryland, is the author of Designing Women: The Dressing Room in Eighteenth-Century Literature and Culture (2005), co-editor of Atlantic Worlds of the Long Eighteenth Century: Seduction and Sentiment, and editor of The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation. She is finishing a book on literature and science, The Experimental Imagination: Literary Knowledge and Science in the British Enlightenment, and has published several essays on related topics in journals such as Configurations and Philological Quarterly.

Jennifer James is Associate Professor of English and Director of the Africana Studies Program at the George Washington University, specializes in African American literature and culture, with a concentration in the 19th century. She has a particular interest in theorizing the relationships among literary praxis, representations of blackness and sociopolitical violence. This interest extends beyond the U.S., incorporating transnational and diasporic perspectives on slavery, war, and revolution in the 19th century Americas. She has also produced essays exploring the ways that the memory of slavery appears in 20th and 21st century African American social justice discourses, including anti-war pacifism, environmentalism and disability agency. Currently, Professor James is working on two projects, Black Jack: Andrew Jackson and African American Cultural Memory, which traces the history three generations of ancestors enslaved by the President, and a cultural history of a little-known labor riot staged by black American miners during the “nadir.”

Michael Degani is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Johns Hopkins University, broadly focusing on energy use and infrastructure in African cities. He is currently writing a book on the ways residents of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania devise informal economies of electricity distribution, and analyze their effects on the rhythms and textures of daily life. He received his PhD in anthropology from Yale University in 2015. At Hopkins, he teaches the anthropologies of infrastructures, economic life, and material culture as well African Studies Courses on science, technology, and postcolonial politics.

Website:

http://anthropology.jhu.edu/directory/michael-degani/

Jennifer Wenzel is an Associate Professor in the Department of English and Comparative Literature and the Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies at Columbia University. Her first book, Bulletproof: Afterlives of Anticolonial Prophecy in South Africa and Beyond (Chicago and KwaZulu-Natal, 2009) was awarded Honorable Mention for the Perkins Prize by the International Society for the Study of Narrative. With Imre Szeman and the late Patricia Yaeger, she co-edited Fueling Culture: 101 Words for Energy and Environment (Fordham 2017). Her current book projects are “Reading for the Planet: World Literature and Environmental Crisis,” and “Contrapuntal Environmentalisms: Nature, North and South.”

Chase Iron Eyes is s an American Indian activist, attorney, politician, and a member of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. He is a member of the Lakota People’s Law Project and co-founder of the Native American news website Last Real Indians. He has used his career as an attorney to advocate for Native American civil rights and he has actively engaged in the protection of sacred sites.