Intersecting Borders: Power and Materiality in Rhetorical Ecologies (Thesis)
Jess Batychenko, Spring 2018

Director: Jennifer Maher
Committee Members: Lucille McCarthy and Beverly Bickel

This thesis integrates notions of capital conceptualized by Pierre Bourdieu into rhetorical theories of place as a means of providing a more nuanced understanding of the ways in which the capital of non-humans influences the way people act and react in the social world. More specifically, Batychenko argues that, by extending the theory of Bruno Latour to include an analysis of the material capital possessed and manifested by non-humans, the material aspects of place can be understood as sites of rhetorical invention that function persuasively to include some and exclude others. In examining how humans and non-humans act in the Baltimore neighborhood of Station North, she argues for the importance of reflexive place-making.