In Amy Lee’s English 31AC course on Climate Change fictions, students studied how contemporary literature shapes the way we view and understand climate change, narrates its impacts, and envisions the future.
Students interned at two organizations, HEAL Food Alliance and the West Oakland Indicators Project (WOEIP). At their internships, students examined the ways in which race, gender, and class structures distribute the effects of climate change unevenly across communities. At HEAL, they developed popular education materials and infographics that broke down complicated policies impacting our food systems. For instance, they created a database that tracked policies and campaigns affecting factory farming, mapped the dominant players involved in the enforcement of the anti-trust law, and made connections between the prison industrial complex and unjust food systems. At WOEIP, students created a video publicizing the important work that WOEIP is doing to create healthy environments in West Oakland.
Through their ACES projects, students create climate change narratives that highlight the grassroots efforts of communities responding to climate change. These local narratives complement and, in many cases, challenge the apocalyptic visions depicted in the body of literature known as cli-fi.