Graduation Year

Spring 2009

Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Department

Environmental Analysis

Reader 1

Char Miller

Reader 2

Maria Tucker

Terms of Use & License Information

Terms of Use for work posted in Scholarship@Claremont.

Rights Information

© 2009 Monica Embrey

Abstract

This text provides an environmental justice analysis of the stories of the people who lived in the Owens Valley, who watered its land and cultivated its crops—pine trees, apple trees, and kabocha alike. Telling the personal stories of challenge and resistance that manifested alongside the oppressive forces of military and state domination provides the opportunity to align forcibly relocated, exploited and incarcerated people’s struggles throughout time. This text starts with The Nü’ma Peoples who were the first humans to live in the Owens Valley and continues with the struggle for empire between rival colonial empires of agriculture and distant urban cities. Its final chapters end with an in-depth and personal exploration of the unconstitutional incarceration of 117,000 people of Japanese ancestry in the United States during World War II. All the while it weaves in poetry, art and grassroots stories of resistance. It is a call to action for Environmental Studies and Ethnic Studies Departments to link the critical analysis within their disciplines to tell more accurate histories.