MLA+U ‘GROUND’ Conversation Series: Othered Grounds

05/06/21, 4:00PM

  • Thursday, May 06, 2021

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With support from The Grant & Shaya Kirkpatrick Landscape Architecture + Urbanism Leadership Fund

Image provided by: Aroussiak Gabrielian

This conversation will focus particularly on the body and its relationship to the ground, specifically those bodies that negotiate the ground outside what has been deemed “normative” frameworks. It will consider how the ground is structured by dominant systems to which Others must conform. Queer bodies, gendered bodies, otherly-abled bodies, non-human bodies are all distinct in their ground negotiations but can be commoned by the fact that they are excluded from hegemonic structures of ground formation. Grouping these categories of variant bodies is not intended to exaggerate the process of Othering, but to discuss ways to mobilize across differences to upend structures of exclusion.



Professor, University of Minnesota, School of Architecture



Assistant Professor, Culture and Media, The New School


Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture + Urbanism and Director of the Landscape Futures Lab, USC School of Architecture


Professor of Gender Studies and English, Columbia University


Associate Professor of Medicine, Health, and Society, Vanderbilt University

About the MLA+U ‘GROUND’ Conversation Series

An interdisciplinary series on the ground’s many manifestations and meanings.


While a primary medium for landscape architects’ physical intervention, the ground has remained muted in discourse and action despite its many manifestations and capacities – to stir, to connect, to remember, as well as to expose and destabilize. This multifaceted explorative series aims to excavate the ground for these manifestations and meanings to better understand how we (humans) situate ourselves in the world and in relation to each other, to our pasts, and to the more-than-human - materials, systems, species. We explore its significance as a noun (the ground; a material), a verb (to ground; its agency), and an adjective (to be grounded; situated). In particular, the series will consider the ground as both a site of exploitation and extraction, as well as resistance and creativity. The series of conversations, exhibition and field happenings focused on questions of landscape and its varied grounds, integrates activists, designers, artists, scholars, scientists, environmentalists with diverse and intersectional identities.