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While the environmental justice perspective focuses on the unequal distribution of environmental risks and benefits across different groups based on race, class, or gender, intersectionality approaches avoid the use of a priori categories to examine marginalization. We argue that intersectionality can broaden the scope of environmental justice studies by examining interactive, historically grounded processes through which categories of difference are produced. To support this argument, we present an illustrative case of the movement in Lithuania that challenged Chevron’s plans to prospect shale resources for potential fracking. We conduct a narrative analysis of public discourses surrounding the formation of the movement and track the creation of a particular category of difference: the rural community, represented in opposition to the urban. We show how the public debate in Lithuania culminated in questioning the legitimacy of the anti-fracking movement and devaluing the rural population more broadly. We also show how both media accounts and anti-fracking movement leaders ignored social inequalities in rural villages. We conclude with a discussion of how the intersectionality approach provides an analytical lens to consider geopolitical tensions as part of the matrix of power relations that can be understood as expressions of ontological insecurity in global borderlands.


Mincyte, Diana & Aiste Bartkiene (2019), “The Anti-fracking Movement and the Politics of Rural Marginalization in Lithuania: Intersectionality in Environmental Justice,” Environmental Sociology, 5:2, 177-187, DOI: 10.1080/23251042.2018.1544834



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