Wednesday, March 14, 2018
Haley Reading Group: Jourdan Imani Keith’s “At Risk” and “Desegregating Wilderness”
[The Best American Science and Nature Writing (2015)]
Cynthia A. Campbell and Howard Rambsy II
[Best American Science and Nature Writing]
Jourdan Imani Keith’s article “At Risk” focuses the term “at risk” as it applies to humans, endangered species (chinook salmon), and the ecosystem. Keith’s article “Desegregating Wilderness” highlights the contrast of the Civil Rights Act and the Wilderness Act.
In “At Risk,” Keith highlights the intersectional identity of being “at risk” as it pertains to race, gender, endangered species and physical location. The article speaks to the “at risk” label—protection or limitation/judgment. Keith notes that “Protecting an endangered species means changing the practices in an entire ecosystem to safeguard their survival” (150). This point indicates the dangers of ignoring the destruction of the ecosystem whether through climate change or ineffective safety precautions.
In “Desegregating Wilderness,” Keith illustrates the types of inequities associated with access to wilderness areas. The article addresses the problematic issues of the Wilderness Act. At one point, Keith notes that “people accessing recreation in the wilderness are still predominately white, and de facto segregation exists instead of a legal one” (152). This point indicates that divisiveness is associated with the lack of access.
After reading both articles, which one did you find most useful? Why?