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Vegans on Speciesism and Ableism

Ecoability Voices for Disability and Animal Justice

by Anthony J. Nocella II (Volume editor) Amber E. George (Volume editor)
Textbook XX, 102 Pages

Summary

This powerful intersectional social justice book examines animal, disability, and environmental oppression and justice. Located in disability studies, sociology, environmental justice, food justice, and critical animal studies, this book engages the reader in an intersectional ecological manner for an inclusive interdependent global community. This outstanding collection of original articles by scholars from around the world discusses the need to acknowledge the relationships among nonhuman animals, those with disabilities, and the environment. Adaptive sports from mountain biking to rock climbing is saving the lives of those with disabilities from extreme depression and suicide at the same time those with disabilities are becoming some of the most loyal advocates for defending the environment from human destruction. Those with disabilities are being welcomed into the animal rights movement and also introduced to nonhuman animals not as merely service animals, but as friends, allies, and companions.

Table Of Contents

  • Cover
  • Advance Praise
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • About the editors
  • About the book
  • This eBook can be cited
  • Dedication
  • Table of Contents
  • Acknowledgments
  • Foreword (Clifton Sanders)
  • Preface (Lea Lani Kinikini)
  • Introduction: Getting in the Outdoors with Disabilities: Fun, Collaboration, and Total Liberation (Amber E. George and Anthony J. Nocella II)
  • 1. Got Autism?: PETA and the Rhetoric of Eco-Ableism (S. Marek Muller)
  • 2. Getting to Solidarity: Toward an Interest-Based Conflict Resolution Approach to Resolving the Conflict between Ecoability Equity and Animal Equity (Daniel Salomon)
  • 3. Selection for and against Disability: Assistance Dogs (Birkan Taş)
  • 4. Queering the Animate Body: Toxicity, Ecoability, and Multispecies Solidarity in Duplin County, North Carolina (Z. Zane McNeill and Rebecca Eli Long)
  • 5. Trauma-Informed Activism: New Directions for Interspecies Trauma in Ecoability and Critical Animal Studies (T.N. Rowan)
  • Afterword (Elisa Stone)
  • Contributors’ Biographies
  • Index
  • Series Index

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Acknowledgments

We would like to thank everyone that is involved in the ecoability movement and field of study that is working to make the relationship between disability, animal, and environmental liberation, advocacy, and justice. We would like to thank the contributors of the book—Clifton Sanders, Lea Lani Kinikini, S. Marek Muller, Daniel Salomon, Birkan Tas, Zoie (Zane) McNeill, Rebecca Eli Long, T.N. Rowan, and Elisa Stone. We would like to thank Peter Lang Publishing for believing in ecoability and publishing on the movement. We would like to thank everyone at Peter Lang Publishing, especially, Jackie Pavlovic, Patty Mulrane, and Dani Green from Peter Lang Publishing. We would like to thank all of those who wrote reviews for the book: Peace Studies Journal, Transformative Justice Journal, Green Theory and Praxis Journal, Richard White, Jason Del Gandio, Nathan Poirier, Jordan Halliday, Will Boisseau, Alisha Page, Johnny Lupinacci, and Ângela Lamas Rodrigues. We would like to thank Institute for Critical Animal Studies, Critical Animal Studies Academy, Critical Animal Studies Society, Ecoability Collective, Academy for Peace Education, Salt Lake Community College’s Department of Criminal Justice, Faculty Senate, JEDI4ST research center, Utah Reintegration Project, JEDI Hub, JEDI Senate, Utah Vegan Runners, Arissa Media Group, Wisdom Behind the Walls, Poetry Behind the Walls, Hangar 15 Bicycles, Galen College, Academy for Peace Education, AK Press, Syracuse Quaker Meeting, Alternatives to Violence Project, Outdoor Empowerment, Lowrider Studies Journal, Punk Studies Journal, Journal of Hip Hop Studies, International Hip Hop Studies Association, Institute for Hip Hop Activism, Lowrider Studies, and Total Liberation Campaigns.

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Foreword

Clifton Sanders

Although it has only existed as a category of inquiry and discourse for a decade, the ecoability movement has produced a remarkably complex and diverse body of work to-date, including critical studies, monographs, conferences, and commentary that break new ground with each publication. Perhaps I should not be so surprised by this, inasmuch as ecoability emerged out of recognitions and relationships that are best described as intersectional. In this book, Anthony Nocella and Amber George assemble scholar-activists to probe the confluences between veganism, critical animal studies, disability, animal, environmental rights, and so on. Formulating the ecoability paradigm creates new space for an activist agenda that critically explores a new universe of connections in ways which illuminate even more complex interdependencies. This in turn further motivates collaboration, support, activism, and, ultimately, desires for justice realized via the total liberation of all species and nature-self.

As a newcomer to ecoability scholarship, I find this book personally compelling in several ways. I have been a teacher and academic administrator at Salt Lake Community College for more than 25 years, but my formal professional training and prior work experience was as a doctorate organic chemist and research scientist. My undergraduate years and summer research internships in industry occurred during the same time frame as the widespread publication of chemical assaults upon the natural world such as the Love Canal disaster and other high-profile pollution and ecosystem destruction scenarios, along with the devastating economic and human impacts of environmental racism upon marginalized and oppressed communities. Moreover, I grew up in Turners Station, Maryland, a working class African American community in southeastern Baltimore County. Turners Station is situated on Bear Creek (a tributary of the Chesapeake Bay) across the water from Sparrows Point, where steel mills, shipyards and power plants thrived from World War II until the 1970s and were notorious for frequent fish kills, toxic ponds, and heavy ←xi | xii→metal ground contamination, some of which still exist in and around my childhood community. (I note, extreme scientific caution notwithstanding, that Henrietta Lacks, whose HeLa cancer cells are celebrated worldwide by the medical community but only recently afforded her recognition, lived in Turners Station at the time of her cervical cancer diagnosis.)

After graduate school, my professional research in biomaterials technology also brought me in contact with animal testing of candidate materials for medical devices intended to improve human health and well-being. And, because of dear friends who are differently abled, I served for several years as a citizen-advocate for a disability rights organization. The point of these biographical snippets is to admit that Anthony Nocella’s invitation to me to write this forward has, through reading and studying the book chapters, moved me into a new space of deep recollection, mourning, reflection, and conviction via an ecoability lens. Several (perhaps all) authors in this book in some way honor their experiential journey through their articles. It is very obvious to me that these scholarly works are also deeply personal and forward-looking responses to various kinds of violence and marginalizations experienced first-hand. I find T.N. Rowan’s chapter on interspecies trauma remarkably heartfelt and incisive. Although I do not cite all the authors of the book in this Foreword, please know that I am overwhelmingly grateful that all these courageous voices accepted the opportunity to speak and reinforce each other in this space. Taken altogether, this collection conveys a prophetic witness that bequeaths dignity, force, urgency, and moral imagination to a strident call to sacrificial, liberatory action. I believe that this witness provides a rich template and guide for ecoability novices like myself to deconstruct our own experiences and cherished myths in pursuit of an activist lifestyle. For example, Zoe (Zane) McNeill and Rebecca Eli Long’s chapter inspires consonances between the plights of Duplin County, North Carolina, and Turners Station, Maryland. They enable me to perceive a shared narrative of exploitation, marginalization, racism, ableism, and ecological destruction, despite the temporal distance of their respective events. Both situations exhibit sadly what we have known for millennia—that exploitation and brute material excess destabilizes, disrupts, and eventually destroys complex (eco)systems. Writ large, the tragic costs of ignoring intersectionality and interdependency championed in the ecoability frame render inevitable the end of the broad road to planetary destruction.

Biographical notes

Anthony J. Nocella II (Volume editor) Amber E. George (Volume editor)

Anthony J. Nocella II, Ph.D., scholar-activist, is an editor of the Peace Studies Journal and a professor in the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology at Salt Lake Community College. He is the co-founder of disability pedagogy, critical animal studies, terrorization, and ecoability and has published over one hundred articles and forty books. Amber E. George, Ph.D., editor of the Journal for Critical Animal Studies, is Assistant Professor at Galen College where she teaches courses in philosophy, sociology, and cultural studies. Dr. George most recently edited Gender and Sexuality in Critical Animal Studies and The Intersectionality of Critical Animal, Disability, and Environmental Studies.

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