Title

Dam Removal: the Politics Behind the Symbol

Presenter

Emily Williams

Abstract

Throughout U.S. history dams have been considered symbols of progress and development. Since the rise of the environmental movement in the 1960s, dams are also considered symbols of environmental degradation. Attitudes towards environmentally driven dam removal vary based on differing interpretations of, and attachments to, the symbolism of dams. Dams removal functions as a powerful political symbol for both the environmental movement and those opposed to environmental frameworks; the debate stems from tensions between varying conceptions and understandings of nature. My presentation examines these disparate conceptions of nature through an analysis of activist rhetoric on both sides of dam removal debates in the Pacific Northwest.

Faculty Sponsor

Shampa Biswas

Sponsor Department/Programs

Politics - Environmental Studies

Tracks

Environmental Impacts

Terms of Use

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Location

Reid G02

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

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Apr 11th, 9:45 AM Apr 11th, 10:00 AM

Dam Removal: the Politics Behind the Symbol

Reid G02

Throughout U.S. history dams have been considered symbols of progress and development. Since the rise of the environmental movement in the 1960s, dams are also considered symbols of environmental degradation. Attitudes towards environmentally driven dam removal vary based on differing interpretations of, and attachments to, the symbolism of dams. Dams removal functions as a powerful political symbol for both the environmental movement and those opposed to environmental frameworks; the debate stems from tensions between varying conceptions and understandings of nature. My presentation examines these disparate conceptions of nature through an analysis of activist rhetoric on both sides of dam removal debates in the Pacific Northwest.

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