At the Australian Association for Environmental Education conference Chessa Adsit-Morris co-presented a paper with Dr. Noel Gough, adjunct professor in the School of Education at La Trobe University, titled “It Takes More Than Two to (Multispecies) Tango: Queering Gender Texts in Environmental Education.” The paper was part of a panel highlighting the forthcoming special issue of The Journal of Environmental Education which will be published in early 2017 that responds to the need for promotion of social equity and enhancing gender equality and women’s empowerment within environmental education. Women, along with other marginalized groups, have been overlooked in much environmental education practice, theory, and research, often subsumed under the notion of 'universalized people', or the ‘norm.’ Panelists discussed how a gender perspective in environmental education research and pedagogy can contribute to the development of environmental education for all.
The paper responded to three previously published articles looking at the intersection of queer theory and environmental education; each of which calls for the creation and circulation of more queer scholarship in environmental education. The paper explored Mark Vagle's (2015) suggestion of working along the edges and margins of phenomenology using poststructuralist concepts and ideas, drawing on the Deleuzean creative conceptions of the molar/molecular, body without organs, and assemblages to queer(y) phenomenological notions of subjects, objects, lived bodies, and (dis)orientations. The paper found that dancing around the edges of phenomenology requires a redrawing of the boundaries of subjectivity and objectivity, one that moves from the individual to the collective, from static objects to material-semiotic generative nodes. The papers’ provocation is that such a queer dance—one that prods and probes the geometries and optics of relationality (Barad, 2003)—can not only reinvigorate environmental education scholarship but also help to reimagine curriculum as a collective inquiry into the practices of enacting and policing boundaries.
A copy of the full paper is available here.