Sage Gerson (she/her/hers) researches and teaches in the fields of Indigenous literatures and ecologies; environmental justice and anticolonial environmentalisms; 20th- and 21st-century literature; the energy humanities and infrastructure studies; Native, Black and Women of Color feminisms; and futurisms, futurity, and speculative fiction, particularly Indigenous Futurities and Afrofuturisms. Recent courses she has taught include Animacy and the Speaking Earth: The Power of Native Story, Visionary Fictions and Reading Infrastructure, Building Worlds. In all of her courses, Gerson asks students to dwell with cultural imaginaries that provide glimpses of a differently perceivable world, where other formations of environment, identity, power and resistance are made possible.
Gerson’s research resides at the intersections of the environmental humanities and the study of colonial modernity through a perspective informed by Black Studies and Native American and Indigenous Studies. Her current project, The Leaky Grid: Black and Native Electrified Imaginaries, examines how electricity has powered US modernity in the 20th and 21st centuries. It works against linear narratives that uncomplicatedly link electricity to progress and instead seeks to perform an anticolonial, antiextractivist and antiracist reading of the US power grid. Such a reading, she contends, is necessary to imagining and enacting transformative environmental futures, where it is possible to be in relationship with Turtle Island’s lands, waters and energies outside of colonial capitalist extraction and Western developmental frameworks. You can find her work in (or forthcoming in) Social Text, Media+Environment, Lateral, the University of California Humanities Research Institute’s (UCHRI) Foundry, and as part of The Black Scholar’s “Social Justice Handbook” series. Gerson received her PhD in English from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she also completed an interdepartmental PhD emphasis in Environment and Society.