fax: 732 445 0006
My interests sit at the intersection of identity and the political. As a feminist political geographer, I work to understand the ways that the ordinary realities of everyday life intertwine with processes that stem from the nation-state. Specifically, I am very interested in how racial identities are shaped and disciplined through nation-state policies and, more importantly, how resistance movements mobilize to fight against state-sponsored violence and marginalization.
My current research addresses the connections between settler colonialism and Columbia River Basin reclamation projects in the United States Pacific Northwest. Through looking at the legislation of historical conflicts over property rights and access to water between Native American groups and white settlers, I show how racialized nation-state processes that began in the 18th and early 19th centuries continue to shape access to, and management of, Columbia Basin waterways. This body of work shows that the dispossession of Columbia Basin Native American tribes from their lands and access to rivers is directly tied to explicit federal strategies to facilitate white settlement of the inland Pacific Northwest, in spite of mid-19th century treaties signed to guarantee that Native American groups would have continued access to traditional fishing and hunting grounds and other sites of cultural importance. Through my research, I merge the historical with the contemporary to show how it was possible, in the space of about a century, that the human demographics of the Columbia Basin region shifted dramatically from a place that was majority indigenous to majority white- a process directly tied to state sponsored efforts to irrigate the inland Pacific Northwest, to transport agricultural products through the rivers, and to develop hydro-electric technologies.
My dissertation work was based in Tucson, Arizona and spanned a period of over two years, from 2013-2015. The political intensity of the Arizona borderlands draws activists from all over the US as well as internationally to connect with social justice work in support of migrants, in opposition to the ever intensifying militarization of the border, or in solidarity with indigenous people whose lands have been overrun by Border Patrol surveillance and harassment. My work with Arizona activists examines moments of conflict and collaboration within social justice work, and the ways these moments are shaped by the different positionalities of people involved. Activists often come together because they are motivated by similar aims and intentions. However, despite these common goals, much conflict exists in activist spaces. Quite often this conflict is rooted in the very different positions occupied by activists due to the socialized privileges (or lack thereof) embodied by participants.
I am also very interested in questions of privilege and marginalization at play within the academic discipline of geography. Particularly for geographies that are ostensibly rooted in a ‘critical’ or ‘radical’ approach— my collaborators and I question the ways that this work often reifies the hegemony of idealized white, cis-male, able-bodied authorities in the discipline. Through this body of work, I explore the ways that the mundane processes of academic work, such as citation or research method, constitute a politics in themselves which often serve to elevate the voices of some while marginalizing others.
Lastly, I love to teach! I am a dedicated life-long educator with experience ranging from teaching elementary and middle school aged children to working with university students. I have worked as a Montessori educator, as well as in public elementary schools and universities. My pedagogy is rooted in considerations of the learning process as it occurs for people at all stages of human development. I have published on the challenges of integrating critical pedagogical approaches at institutions with large class sizes and where demands on one’s time make it difficult to provide a meaningful educational experience. I am very interested in pedagogical practices that are rooted in a goal of collective liberation and social justice. I approach my university teaching mindful of ways that we can address challenging topics in the classroom and encourage students to understand their own unique position in relation to systems of oppression.
Follow me on Twitter: @mott_carrie.
Mott C and Cockayne D (forthcoming) Conscientious disengagement and whiteness as a condition of dialogue, Dialogues in Human Geography.
Mott C (2018) Building Relationships within Difference: An Anarcha-Feminist Approach to the Micropolitics of Solidarity, The Annals of the Association of American Geographers. DOI: 10.1080/24694452.2017.1385378
Mott C and Cockayne D (2017) Citation matters: mobilizing the politics of citation toward a practice of ‘conscientious engagement’, Gender, Place & Culture. DOI: 10.1080/0966369X.2017.1339022.
Mott C (2017) Precious Work: White anti-racist pedagogies in Southern Arizona, Social and Cultural Geography. DOI: 10.1080/14649365.2017.1355067.
Mott C, Sidaway J, Barrera de la Torre G, Ferretti F, Crane N, Long S, Knopp L, Rouhani F, Smith J, Springer S (2017) Review Forum: The Anarchist Roots of Geography: Toward Spatial Emancipation by Simon Springer. AAG Review of Books.
Mott C (2016) The Activist Polis: Topologies of conflict in indigenous solidarity activism, Antipode 48(1): 193-211.
Mott C (2016) Feminist Geography, Oxford Bibliographies http://www.oxfordbibliographies.com/.
Mott C (2016) Geographies of Whiteness, Oxford Bibliographies http://www.oxfordbibliographies.com/.
The University of Kentucky Critical Pedagogy Working Group, Mott C, Zupan S, R.L., and Debbane´A (2015) Making Space for Critical Pedagogy in the Neoliberal University: struggles and possibilities”, ACME 14(4): 1260-1282.
Mott C (2015) Re-living Tucson: geographic fieldwork as an activist-academic. Arizona Anthropologist 24(1): 33-41.
Mott C and Roberts S (2014) Not Everyone Has (the) Balls: Urban exploration and the persistence of masculinist geography, Antipode 46(1): 229-245.
Mott C (2014) Review: Quiet Rumors: An Anarcha-Feminist Reader, by the Dark Star Collective. Human Geography 7(3): 119-121.
Mott C and Roberts S (2013) Difference Really Does Matter: A Response to Garrett and Hawkins, www.antipodefoundation.org. http://radicalantipode.files.wordpress.com/2013/11/mott-and-roberts-reply.pdf
Human Geography: Space, Place, and Location; Maps, Power, and the Digital World; Gender Geographies; Geographies of Race and Ethnicity in the United States; Global Awareness: An Introduction to Global and International Studies