The Creative Process in 10 minutes or less · Arts, Culture & Society: Books, Film, Music, TV, Art, Writing, Creativity, Education, Environment, Theatre, Dance, LGBTQ, Climate Change, Sustainability, Social Justice, Spirituality, Feminism, Technology
LEAH THOMAS - Author of The Intersectional Environmentalist - Founder of IE Platform & @GreenGirlLeah
Manage episode 386213681 series 3334555
"So I think the first step is definitely awareness. I know when I was the only Black student in my environmental science program, I didn't quite understand why I really wanted to focus on the environmental injustices that were going on in my neighborhood. Or the concept of racial justice was always kind of intertwined with my environmental advocacy. So it's something that I want other communities of color to understand that that's okay, that you can show up to this field and also have empathy for your own community and that you don't need to separate your identity from your environmental practice. And including your cultural background can actually enhance the work that you do because I think it's such a beautiful thing that we all have different identity aspects, whether that's religion, race, gender, etc.
So I think that's the first step, making sure that representation is there so all people can see themselves reflected in environmental education and feel empowered to know that they belong and they can take their identity with them and that enhances their environmental practice. And secondly, through The Intersectional Environmentalist Platform, we love to platform students who are working on climate justice research and share it through kind of untraditional means. So they might not be published in a scientific paper, but it's something they can share amongst their peers in our community of about half a million people, etc. So it's another way for them to share their research at the intersection of identity and environmentalism with more people. And that's something I really enjoy with our work, just letting people know that, yeah, your work is important, even if it's not published in a scientific paper. There is a really big community of people out there who are interested in learning and might even relate to that research."
Leah Thomas is an intersectional environmental activist and eco-communicator based in Southern California. She’s passionate about advocating for and exploring the relationship between social justice and environmentalism and was the first to define the term “Intersectional Environmentalism.” She is the founder of @greengirlleah and The Intersectional Environmentalist platform. Her articles on this topic have appeared in Vogue, Elle, The Good Trade, and Youth to the People and she has been featured in Harper’s Bazaar, W Magazine, Domino, GOOP, Fashionista, BuzzFeed, and numerous podcasts. She has a B.S. in Environmental Science and Policy from Chapman University and worked for the National Park Service and Patagonia headquarters before pursuing activism full time. She lives in Carpinteria, California. She is the author of The Intersectional Environmentalist: How to Dismantle Systems of Oppression to Protect People + Planet, and Winner of the Creative Force Foundation Award 2023.