Stacey Balkan is an Associate Professor of Environmental Literature and Humanities, Interim Head of the CLL (Cultures, Languages and Literatures) Track for the Ph.D. Program in Comparative Studies, and Program Coordinator for the Undergraduate Minor in Environment and Society. Dr. Balkan also serves as an affiliate faculty member for the university’s Peace, Justice, and Human Rights Initiative. Her teaching and research focus on Environmental/Energy Humanities, Environmental/Energy Justice, Petrocultures & Petromodernity, Environmental Literature(s), Ecocriticism, Global South and Postcolonial Studies, and Anglophone World Literatures; and she teaches several interdisciplinary undergraduate and graduate seminars, including Literature and the Environment, Postcolonial Environments, Energy Humanities and Petrocultures, Climate Fictions, and Global Environments. Stacey is also a frequent contributor to Public Books and believes strongly in the role of the public intellectual as a scholar-activist.
Dr. Balkan’s new book, Rogues in the Postcolony: Narrating Extraction and Itinerancy in India, is the inaugural title in the Histories of Capitalism and the Environment Series for West Virginia University Press. Rogues in the Postcolony is a study of Anglophone Indian picaresque novels that dramatize the impacts of extractive capitalism and colonial occupation on local communities in several Indian states. A materialist history of development on the subcontinent, the project considers works by Amitav Ghosh, Indra Sinha, and Aravind Adiga, each of which critiques violent campaigns of enclosure and dispossession at the hands of England’s premier trading company and its corporate legatees. In foregrounding the intersection(s) between landscape ideology, agricultural improvement, extractive capitalism, and aesthetic expression, Rogues also attends to the complicity of popular aesthetic forms with political and economic policy, as well as the colonial and extractivist logics that often frame discussions around the so-called Anthropocene epoch. (Read Stacey’s “Author’s Note” here!)
Dr. Balkan also works with the After Oil Collective with whom she has published a new book on just energy futures and intersectional justice: Solarities: Seeking Energy Justice (Minnesota, 2022). New and recent projects may also be found here: https://www.petrocultures.com/about/