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Andrew W. Mellon Dissertation Fellows
in the Environmental Humanities, 2019-2020

The Center for Environmental Futures has awarded two dissertation fellowships in the Environmental Humanities that support a full academic year of dissertation writing in the final year for UO students.

Allison Ford (Sociology) “Environmental Politics at the End of the World–Prepping as Environmental Practice”

Allison Ford’s dissertation explores the practice of prepping, in which individuals and families prepare to respond to emergencies, disasters, or the collapse of society, without relying on social institutions such as the state of market. Based on ethnographic data (message boards, blogs, and social media), Ford argues that prepping is an environmental practice because it involves renegotiating the material flows of food, water, energy, waste, and other facets of material life.

Rebekah Sinclair (Philosophy)
“Species Trouble: A Pluralist Problematization of the Discourse of Species”

Rebekah Sinclair’s dissertation argues that the species concept is an ethically problematic, historical specific, social and political construction. Working at the intersection of social philosophy, the environmental humanities, biology, and the philosophy of biology, Sinclair’s dissertation develops an interdisciplinary theoretical framework for demonstrating both that “species” is a social construct and that we can effectively question and dismantle it.


Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Scholar
in the Environmental Humanities, 2019-2020

The Center for Environmental Futures has awarded a post-doctoral fellowship in the Environmental Humanities to a scholar who earned a PhD within the last three years, with a preference for UO graduates.

M Jackson has joined the Center for Environmental Futures for the 2019-20 academic year as the inaugural Mellon Post-Doctoral Scholar. A glaciologist, M earned her doctorate in geography from the University of Oregon, where she examined how climate change transformed people and glacier communities in Iceland. She is a National Geographic Society Explorer (and an Arctic Expert for NGS), a TED fellow, and a three-time Fulbright Fellow (two of which were joint awards with the National Science Foundation). Although she graduated from UO only two years ago, she is already an accomplished scholar and writer. Her award-winning memoir, While Glaciers Slept: Being Human in a Time of Climate Change (Green Writers Press, 2015), traced the parallel stories of what happens when the climates of a family and a planet change. Her second book, based on her doctoral dissertation, The Secret Lives of Glaciers (Green Writers Press, 2019) explored the profound impacts of glacier change on the human and physical geography of Iceland.

While in residence as a post-doctoral fellow at UO, she will work on a new book project, “Living Blue: Stories of Women and Ice” (written in both English and Icelandic), based on ethnographic interviews with Icelandic women. The book will focus on women’s stories of living in the shadows of receding glaciers and their local knowledge of ice.

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