Cram receives Rhetoric Society of America 2023 Book Award

You are here

Monday, May 15, 2023 - 12:00am to 11:45pm

GWSS professor E Cram has received the 2023 Book Award from the Rhetoric Society of America for their book, Violent Inheritance: Sexuality, Land, Energy and the Making of the North American West (California UP 2022).

The Book Award recognizes the best work in rhetorical studies published by an RSA member in a given year.

The selection committee writes:

Dr. Cram’s Violent Inheritance: Sexuality, Land, and Energy in Making the North American West is a truly remarkable work of interdisciplinary scholarship. Bringing together work in environmental cultural and rhetorical studies, environmental and energy humanities, Indigenous studies, queer ecologies, cultural geography, and affect studies, the book connects the invention of 'sexual modernity' to energy regimes, based on how racialized sexualities informed people's relationships to energy and the land and how these, in turn, created biopolitical hierarchies. Cram wonders how we may respond to the inherited violences of such regimes and whether it is possible in a white settler world to transform our ethics into a more regenerative one. Their response lies in their articulation of 'queer collaborative stewardship' which rejects extraction and scarcity models pushed by settler colonialism in favor of abundance, alliance, and regeneration. Violent Inheritances has been described by reviewers as 'a must-read for those immersed in rhetorical, environmental, queer, and critical race projects' and 'a bracing, powerful, and essential achievement.' And, the book has the potential to speak to audiences beyond academia, including those affected by the policies described. Written to be theoretical and personal, analytical and poetic, the book weaves stories about the author's intimate relationships with places with the stories about their energy ecologies, showing how people's experiences are imbricated within systems of power.