Title page for ETD etd-04262012-104146

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Brisini, Travis Paine
Author's Email Address Travis.Brisini@gmail.com
URN etd-04262012-104146
Title AMD&ART: Performativity and Participation in Ecological Remediation
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
Department Communication Studies
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Bowman, Michael S. Committee Chair
Bowman, Ruth Laurion Committee Member
King, Andrew Committee Member
Brown, Andrea Dean's Representative
  • Acid Mine Drainage
  • Ecology
  • Environmental Art
  • Companion Species
Date of Defense 2012-03-16
Availability unrestricted
In this study, I examine and theorize AMD&ART, an artwork devoted to treating polluted water in Vintondale, PA. AMD&ART is much more than simply a water treatment facility, however. Each chapter of this document examines AMD&ART through the lens of a different body of scholarly literature: the literature associated with land art, Systems Theory, Network Theory, Companion Specieshood and others. The theoretical focus of this paper is the emergent importance of the concept of performativity—“that reiterative power of discourse to produce the phenomena that it regulates and constrains” (Butler, Bodies 2)—in the deconstruction of the binary division of “nature” and “culture.” I offer AMD&ART as an example of a site wherein the fraught, complex webs of affect muddle the easy division of nature from culture. To this end, my paper argues that Bruno Latour’s compound-term “natureculture” can afford scholars of performance points of access to other, disparate fields: philosophy, natural history, geography and art, to name a few. Beyond this, readers are asked to consider their role in the unfolding of the world around them—both mundane and spectacular.
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