Semá:th X_ó:tsa

Madi and Astrida spent much of 2022 learning and thinking intermittently with Semá:th X_ó:tsa, a water body of great seasonal variation, in Sto:lo territory and the Fraser River watershed. The project began as an invitation to submit a chapter for a Routledge handbook on gender and water governance and rolled over into the realm of elemental spectacle for a panel talk at the 2022 American Studies Association conference in New Orleans.

Our paper begins with the story of the spectacle of that river in the sky, where elements-out-of-place signal the need to rethink the way we understand and categorize bodies of water. We propose that the deployment of trans ecological conceptual frames offer an alternative anticolonial land/water imaginary that can address both the need to learn from Sto:lo histories of thriving alongside elemental instability, as well as the urgency of living under present and future climate instability. Marginal and marginalised “fringe natures” such as Sema:th X_o:tsa, moreover, teach us about the possibilities of living as part of an expanded littoral zone, where
anticolonial, feminist and queer-trans modes of watery being might flourish.

Water flows judiciously through a riparian forest of trees of bushes, all in full foliage.

Conference presentation APA citation:
Donald, M. & Neimanis, A. (2022, November 5). Semá:th X_ó:tsa & the River in the Sky [Conference presentation]. American Studies Association Conference 2022, New Orleans, Louisiana, United States.

Conference presentation materials:

Publication information:

The chapter will be included in the forthcoming Routledge Handbook on Gender and Water Governance edited by Margreet Zwarteveen, Seema Kulkarni, Lisa Bossenbroek, Tatiana Acevedo-Guerrero and Irene Leonardelli.

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