Job Talk: “We Speak For Ourselves”: Indigenous Environmental Justice in Oscar Zeta Acosta’s Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo, by Edgar Garcia, Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English Language & Literature, Yale University
Wed, January 28, 2015 • 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM • Meeting Room 1.106, Student Activity Center (SAC), The University of Texas at Austin
Oscar Zeta Acosta’s 1972 Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo reflects trends in social justice movements of the time that linked political empowerment to self-knowing and self-fashioning. Acosta’s autobiography functions as an ecological migration narrative forged in response to critical environmental justice issues such as pesticides, food toxicity, and open-pit uranium mining. The talk underscores the historicity of indigenous environmentalism, demonstrating how environmental traumas lead to critical responses eliciting transnational, cross-cultural, planetary communities and collaborations.