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Michael Murphy: Slavery, blackness, and the environmental significance of race

Event Type
Department of Sociology
wifi event
Apr 22, 2022   3:00 pm  
Michael Murphy
Originating Calendar
Department of Sociology

Abstract: This talk will focus on one aspect of Professor Murphy's current book project, tentatively titled, The Plantation Problem: An Inquiry into the Environmental Significance of Race. Overall, this book contends with the limits of prevailing thoughts on race and the environment within Sociology that tend to ignore the ongoing social and ecological import of imperialism and colonialism. In this talk, Professor Murphy argues that to make sense of the senseless ways in which Black life is ever vulnerable to manifold environmental risks and hazards in the present, we must reckon with the past of racial slavery and the plantation as a socioenvironmental configuration, and he will draw from his research on Rhode Island to elucidate this point.

Speaker bio: Michael Warren Murphy is currently an Assistant Professor of Sociology, with a secondary appointment in the Department of Africana Studies, at the University of Pittsburgh. He earned his B. A. in Sociology from the University of San Diego and both his M.A. and Ph.D. in Sociology from Brown University. His primary areas of interest include Du Boisian, environmental, anticolonial, and historical sociology, racial-colonial domination and violence, critical environmental justice, Black and Indigenous studies, and social theory.

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