Carolyn Finney: Being Black and Seeing Green: Risking to Gain and Playing the Long Game
Time & Location
About the Event
Christian Cooper. George Floyd. John Muir. Systemic racism. Cancel Culture. In this moment of racial reckoning, how do we call ourselves out in order to call ourselves in? What does "keeping it real" look like in this moment? Our loftier ideals won't matter if we don't deal with the truth on the ground. No matter how rigorous we are in our articulation of diversity and sustainability, our good intentions don't necessarily translate into real change if we haven't dealt with the underlying issues. We need to go beyond what is academically sanctioned. What does total transformation demand? Are we ready? Carolyn Finney, PhD is a storyteller, author and a cultural geographer. She is deeply interested in issues related to identity, difference, creativity, and resilience. Carolyn is grounded in both artistic and intellectual ways of knowing - she pursued an acting career for eleven years, but five years of backpacking trips through Africa and Asia, and living in Nepal changed the course of her life. Motivated by these experiences, Carolyn returned to school after a 15-year absence to complete a B.A., M.A. (gender and environmental issues in Kenya and Nepal) and a Ph.D. (where she was a Fulbright and a Canon National Science Scholar Fellow). Along with public speaking, writing, media engagements, consulting & teaching, she served on the U.S. National Parks Advisory Board for eight years. Her first book, Black Faces, White Spaces: Reimagining the Relationship of African Americans to the Great Outdoors was released in 2014. Recent publications include Self-Evident: Reflections on the Invisibility of Black Bodies in Environmental Histories (BESIDE Magazine, Montreal Spring 2020), and The Perils of Being Black in Public: We are all Christian Cooper and George Floyd (The Guardian, June 3rd 2020). She is currently doing a two-year residency in the Franklin Environmental Center at Middlebury College as the Environmental Studies Professor of Practice.