The End of Austin

an exploration of urban identity in the middle of Texas


Past contributors to The End of Austin are listed here.

Carrie Andersen was a founding member of The End of Austin editorial board and a Ph.D. student in American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Her research explores violence, media, affect, and political theory. She also works as a comedy reporter for

Olivia Arena is a Plan II Honors/ Urban Studies/ International Relations junior at the University of Texas. She is interested in the way governments react to climate change and develop sustainable practices in urban environments.

Dominique Pierre Batiste is a Ph.D. student in the Anthropology Dept. at the University of Texas at Austin. His research involves the ethnographic study of gay male communities in France and the United States, their identity formations as men who have sex with men, and the queer affects, embodiments, subjectivities, world-makings, and senses of belonging that both inform and are informed by these identities.

Katharine Battistoni lives in Austin with a typewriter, three guitars, and the complete works of e e cummings, if material possessions are to say anything of character. She can be found here: and here:

Robert M. Bednar is Associate Professor and Chair of Communication Studies at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, where he teaches media studies, visual communication, and critical/cultural studies. His work as an analyst, photographer, and theorist of critical visual communication focuses on the ways that people perform identities visually, materially and spatially in public landscapes. He has published a number of scholarly and popular articles on National Park snapshot photography practices and roadside crash shrines, and currently is completing a book titled Road Scars: Trauma, Memory, and Automobility.

Clara Bensen is the author of “No Baggage: A Minimalist Tale of Love and Wandering,” a novel depicting a sans-luggage adventure to Europe with a newly-minted travel partner. She takes long, cross-city walks in Austin and writes poetry. You can read more here:

Andres Lombana Bermudez is an interdisciplinary designer/researcher/educator and a Ph.D. candidate in Media Studies at the University of Texas at Austin.

Andrew Busch (Ph.D. University of Texas at Austin, 2011) is a Visiting Assistant Professor of American Studies at Miami University. His work focuses on the intersections among urban development, race, environmentalism, and political economy. His current project, City in a Garden: Race, the Environment, and Progressive Politics in Austin, Texas, 1928-2011 investigates the development of Austin, Texas and the ways that ideologies of the natural and the urban shaped the race and class geography of the city. Busch comes to Miami from St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas where he was an adjunct professor of Cultural Foundations. In 2010 he was nominated for the William S. Livingston Outstanding Graduate Student Academic Employee Award at UT, and he has published essays in American Quarterly and on barbecue culture in Texas. He also helped develop a public and oral history archive on Texas barbecue with the Southern Foodways Alliance at the University of Mississippi. His future projects include an analysis of the relationship between progressivism and neoliberalism as well as a history of Chicago during the 1970s and 1980s.

Sean Cashbaugh is a member of The End of Austin Editorial Board and a Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of American Studies at UT Austin, where he researches cultures of American radicalism, political art, and underground culture.  His dissertation examines the rise of “the Underground” as a distinct political and aesthetic imaginary in the American 1950s and 1960s.

Jennifer Chenoweth is a visual artist in Austin, Texas. She creates contemporary, abstract, conceptual artworks in all media. She is the founder of

John Clary is a graduate student in the Department of Geography and the Environment at The University of Texas at Austin. His research employs GIS to explore the relationship between international migration, information and communication technologies, and the production of transnational spaces.

Matt Clifton (M.S. Community & Regional Planning; M. Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin, 2013) recently worked as part of a multidisciplinary group from the University of Texas to implement a community-scale worm composting pilot project in the Dominican Republic. Their experience is chronicled in the book Los Cinco Corazones (UT School of Architecture, 2012). He has lived in Kentucky, D.C., Oregon, and Chile, but actually looks forward to stepping off of the plane at Bergstrom.

Caitlyn Collins received her PhD in Sociology from the University of Texas at Austin in spring 2016. She studies gender inequality in the workplace and family life using cross-national, qualitative methods. Her dissertation is an interview study of 135 middle-income working mothers in Germany, Sweden, Italy, and the United States. She will join the faculty at Washington University in St. Louis as Assistant Professor of Sociology in fall 2016.

Michael Corcoran left his native Hawaii for the musical paradise of Austin in 1984. After leaving in 1988 and writing for Spin, Rolling Stone, National Lampoon and other publications, he returned to Austin in ’95 to take a job as music critic for the Austin American Statesman. He wrote the Grammy-nominated book/CD He Is My Story: The Sanctified Soul of Arizona Dranes in 2012.

Megan Coxe is an Austin-based writer and photographer. She has a Masters from the Spanish and Portuguese Department at UT Austin, where she studied the relationship between racial politics and spatial imaginaries in the Southern Cone of South America through visual and textual works. She has also published creative works in Bazaar and Poetry Quarterly, among other publications.

Richie Deegan is an artist and painter, father and husband, based in Austin, TX. His upcoming solo art show will be at Imagine Art Gallery in May 2017. His many works may be otherwise viewed at:

Eric Dickey is a native Texan, veteran, and UT Austin alumni with a B.A. in International Relations and Global Studies. He has a background as a Korean linguist and in military intelligence.

Joel Dinerstein is Director of the New Orleans Center for the Gulf South at Tulane University, where he directs the American Studies program. He is the author of Swinging the Machine: Modernity, Technology, and African-American Culture Between the World Wars (2003), an award-winning cultural study of jazz and industrialization. He is currently working on a cultural history of the concept of cool through two different projects: first, as co-curator of a photography and American Studies exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution entitled American Cool (opening February 2014) and second, as author of the forthcoming book, The Origins of Cool in Postwar America (University of Chicago Press).

Owen Egerton is the author of the novel The Book of Harold, The Illegitimate Son of God, the short story collection How Best to Avoid Dying and the novel Marshall Hollenzer is Driving. Based on these books, Egerton was voted Austin’s favorite author in 2007, 2008 and 2010 by the readers of the Austin Chronicle. Egerton also co-wrote the irreverent Dadlabs Guide to Fatherhood: Pregnancy and Year One (Quirk Publishing 2009) as well as a series of award winning web videos found at He has also written several comedy screenplays including Bobbie Sue (Warner Brothers) andHenchmen (MRC). His writing has been featured in American Short Fiction, Puerto del Sol, Killing the Buddha, Tiferet, Word Riot, and elsewhere. He has also been a reoccurring commentator on NPR stations. Egerton was co-creator of the award winning comedy hitThe Sinus Show at the Alamo Drafthouse Theater, and for several years was the artistic director of Austin’s National Comedy Theatre. He still performs comedy around town, including working with Master Pancake Theater. Egerton earned a MFA in Creative Writing from Texas State University in 2005 where he was a recipient of the Rose Scholarship. He currently lives in Austin, Texas, with his wife and two children.

Susan Floyd is a UT alumna (English, ’01) and staff member (Department of French and Italian, Center for European Studies). On the side, she’s also a food blogger, aspiring archivist, amateur medievalist, and street art photographer. She is also an alumna of the University of York (UK, English, ’03), and a lifelong Anglophile who previously lived and worked in the UK for four years.  She lives in downtown Austin with her partner Eric and their two cats. Other interests include Texana, calligraphy, Liverpool FC, whiskey, International Klein Blue, and The Real Housewives of New Jersey. Her personal blog can be found here.

Andrew Gansky is an Austin transplant who likes to remember “the good old days” (circa 2010) before the city was ruined by other transplants. He was drawn to Texas by the great magnet UT, where he still pursues graduate work in American Studies.

Joel Garreau is a student of culture, values and change.  He is the Lincoln Professor of Law, Culture and Values at Arizona State University.  Previously he was a long-time reporter and editor at The Washington Post.  His books examining various Great Out There’s are Radical Evolution:  The Promise and Peril of Enhancing Our Minds, Our Bodies – And What It Means to Be HumanEdge City: Life on the New Frontier, and The Nine Nations of North America.

Brendan Gaughen is working his way toward a Ph.D. in American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin.  His research interests focus on the connections between material culture, collecting, mobility, and the human relationship to place.  When not doing academic-related things, he enjoys playing vintage video games, wandering America’s backroads, and a GPS-based hobby called geocaching.

Anna Gieselman is a native Austinite and local maker: beekeeper, yoga instructor, and jewelry craftswoman. Her work can be found here:

Stu Gilbert is a writer and filmmaker based in Austin.

Marett Hanes is pursuing a Master of Science in Community and Regional Planning at the University of Texas at Austin. She holds a BA in Theatre Arts from St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas, where she was awarded “Outstanding Honors Senior Thesis of 2011” for Creativity and Community: The Struggle Between Gentrification and Art in Harlem and Central East Austin. For the past year, she has combined her interests in education, fine arts, and social justice by working as a Teaching Artist for Creative Action. She hopes to preserve a livable, enjoyable future for all Austinites for decades to come, and to protect the racial and economic diversity every great city needs.

Jarrett Hayman is an Austin-based film and video artist. He is a programmer for Experimental Response Cinema, a local screening series showcasing avant-garde and experimental moving image works.

Laura Hernandez-Ehrisman is Associate Professor in the Department of University Studies at St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas. She received her PhD in the American Studies Department at the University of Texas at Austin in 2003. In her book Inventing the Fiesta City: Heritage and Carnival in San Antonio, she studied the history of San Antonio’s biggest cultural festival, Fiesta, and the particular struggles of women and Mexican Americans for inclusion in the city’s public culture.

Catalina Iannone is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Texas at Austin where she studies the intersectionality of race, rhetoric, and urban space in Madrid and Lisbon.

Morgan Ireland is currently a senior at UT, and will be graduating with a degree in Anthropology and a minor in Asian Studies. Within Anthropology, she is focused on Cultural Anthropology. Her primary areas of interest are urban anthropology, anthropology of gender and race, anthropology of tourism and South Asian studies. She hopes to go on to a graduate program in Anthropology after graduating and earn her PhD in Cultural Anthropology.

Robert Jensen is a professor in the School of Journalism at the University of Texas at Austin and board member of the Third Coast Activist Resource Center in Austin. He is the author of Arguing for Our Lives: A User’s Guide to Constructive Dialogue (City Lights, 2013); All My Bones Shake: Seeking a Progressive Path to the Prophetic Voice (Soft Skull Press, 2009); Getting Off: Pornography and the End of Masculinity (South End Press, 2007); The Heart of Whiteness: Confronting Race, Racism and White Privilege (City Lights, 2005); Citizens of the Empire: The Struggle to Claim Our Humanity (City Lights, 2004); and Writing Dissent: Taking Radical Ideas from the Margins to the Mainstream (Peter Lang, 2002). Jensen is also co-producer of the documentary film “Abe Osheroff: One Foot in the Grave, the Other Still Dancing” (Media Education Foundation, 2009), which chronicles the life and philosophy of the longtime radical activist. An extended interview Jensen conducted with Osheroff is online here. Jensen’s articles can be found online here.

Monty Jones is a writer in Austin. His poems have appeared in the Texas Observer, Christian Science Monitor, North Dakota Quarterly, Southern Poetry Review, New Mexico Humanities Review, Arcadia, and other publications.

Caroline Koebel is an Austin-based filmmaker and writer on faculty at Transart Institute (New York-Berlin). Her experimental films and art videos have played internationally, with recent retrospectives at Festival Cine//B (Santiago, Chile) and Directors Lounge (Berlin, Germany). She has published in Jump CutBrooklyn RailAfterimage…might be goodArt PapersWide Angle, and elsewhere. She holds a BA in Film Studies from UC Berkeley and an MFA in Visual Arts from UC San Diego. Her work can be found here.

Anna Kuperberg is a photographer based in San Francisco.  Her photographs have been exhibited in a solo show at the St Louis Art Musem and are in the permanent collections of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the St Louis Art Museum, and the Portland Art Museum.  She has a BFA from Washington University in St Louis and an MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute.

Amy Leung is a Geography/Sociology/Plan II Honors undergraduate at The University of Texas at Austin.

Randy Lewis is a Professor in the Department of American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin and the editor of The End of Austin.

Joshua Long is an Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies at Southwestern University. His 2010 book, Weird City, uses the “Keep Austin Weird” movement as a central focus to explore the socio-cultural, demographic, and land use changes occurring in Austin at the beginning of the 21st century.

Sean Lords taught English in Seoul, South Korea for three years before pursuing his Master of Education. He now likes to write about education and urban farming while raising his wonderful family.

Jonathan Lowell is a recent graduate of UT-Austin, where he received his MA in Geography.

Jessica Luther is a journalist, writer, and activist in Austin. Her writing has been published in the Texas Observer and at the Guardian, the AtlanticSalonSports On EarthThink Progress, and RH Reality Check. Until very recently, she was a Ph.D. candidate in the history department at The University of Texas at Austin, but recently left to pursue her writing career. You can find her at here and here (her site on sports and culture). Also, she’s always on Twitter.

Joy Luther is a Clinical Social Worker and part-time Singer-Songwriter who, in August 1970, came to Austin on a Greyhound bus looking for the University of Texas. She’s been living in and out of Austin ever since, and is still trying to find her way around.

Andy Mattern is an artist who specializes in photography. He received his BFA from the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque in 2002 and his MFA from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis in 2012. Mattern’s work has been a part of exhibitions throughout the United States in venues such as the DeVos Art Museum, Okay Mountain, The Lawndale Art Center, the Katherine E. Nash Gallery, and Prøve Gallery. Mattern’s work was included in the group show Regarding Place at the Peri Centre for Photography in Turku, Finland in 2011. Mattern’s work has been included in online publications such as Fraction Magazine, Humble Arts Foundation’s Group Show, and numerous blogs such as and His work is part of the Tweed Museum of Art’s permanent collection and various private collections. Andy Mattern was born in 1979 and now lives and works in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Robin McDowell is an MFA candidate in Design at the University of Texas at Austin. Her work probes conventional practices of urban placemaking through analysis of commercial typography in the American South and the rhetoric of tourism. Past and current projects can be found at

Connor McGee has lived in Austin most of his life and is an occasional freelance non-fiction writer. He’s written stories for the Austin Post on the economics of the ACL Music Festival’s ticket sales and the last days of the UT burger restaurant Players. Connor holds a BA from UT and a Masters in Public Administration from Cornell University. He enjoys research and was formerly an internal government auditor.

Jeffrey L. Meikle is the Stiles Professor in American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Meikle’s research interests as a cultural historian include industrial design and technology, visual representation in popular print media, and alternative cultures from 1950 to the present.  His books include Twentieth Century Limited: Industrial Design in America, 1925-1939American Plastic: A Cultural History; and Design in the USA.

Jason Mellard is a lecturer with the Center for Texas Music History at Texas State University where he serves as co-editor of The Journal of Texas Music History.  His Progressive Country:  How the Seventies Transformed the Texan in Popular Culture was published in Fall 2013 from the University of Texas Press.

Adrian Mesko was born in Czechoslovakia before moving to Australia aged 12. Upon completion of his school commitments he moved to London where he began assisting. He assisted for 7 years Annie Leibowitz & Michael Thompson. Adrian now lives in New York City. Clients include Vogue Australia, Harpers Bazaar, The Face, GQ Japan, GQ China, GQ Australia, Oyster Magazine, RUSSH magazine. In 2012 he exhibited a Video installation at the Edinburg Festival alongside Ryan McGinley, Tim Walker and Juergen Teller.

Jennifer Minner is an Assistant Professor at Cornell University.  She earned a Ph.D. in community and regional planning from the University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture. There she studied Austin’s commercial strips as landscapes of thrift and reinvestment, wicked problems and sustainable possibilities.

Emily Mixon is a student at the University of Texas at Austin.

Leana Mooradian is an artist based in Austin.

Ryan Morris has been writing authentic from the heart rock songs since 2005. Ryan plays solo and full band shows with the all-star-band, Fluoxetine, backing him up. Ryan and Fluoxetine have been gracing the stages of Texas for many years in classic rooms such as The Hole in the Wall, Momo’s, Ego’s, and the ever dingy Trophy’s.

Jack Murphy is an architectural designer currently based in Austin and received his Bachelor of Science in Architectural Design from MIT.

Pamela Neumann is a doctoral candidate in sociology at the University of Texas at Austin. Broadly, her research interests include gender-based violence, environmental inequality, and contentious politics in Latin America. Her dissertation examines how routine state practices impact the everyday lives and legal decision-making of women victims of domestic violence in Nicaragua. She has also conducted research on women’s participation in development programs in rural Nicaragua and community perceptions of environmental contamination in Peru. Her work has been published in Gender & Society and Social Problems. 

Vasilina Orlova was born in the village of Dunnai in the Russian Far East in 1979. She has lived in Vladivostok, Moscow, and London, and is now based in Austin, United States. She holds a Ph.D. in philosophy and is the author of seven novels in Russian—among them The Voice of Fine StillnessThe Wilderness, and The Supper of a Praying Mantis. She has also published several books of prose and poetry, including YesterdayThe Wilderness, and Quartet. She is the recipient of several Russian literary awards and is a laureate of the Anton Delvig Prize for the poetry book Barefoot (2008). She has written in English since 2012, her first publication in the language being in Di-Vêrsé-City, the Austin International Poetry Festival anthology. She translates the works of Russian and American classical and contemporary poets. Her poetry and prose has been translated into English, French, Spanish, Bulgarian, Ukrainian, and Russian.

Erica Robert Pallo was first intrigued by the motion picture as a child growing up in Cincinnati, Ohio. After seeing amateur home (film) movies of her family magically come to life on a rickety, fold-out projector screen, she was hooked. As she grew up and caught the travel bug, Erica sought out adventures around the world and all the while kept a camera in hand, documenting what inspired her. She then produced two documentary films for her Undergraduate Senior Theses in Anthropology and Interdisciplinary Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, both of which centered on food and food culture. Erica believes that how and what we eat can be metaphors for community, family, popular culture, national identity, and personal pride. She also keeps two food culture blogs about this subject. Now in Austin pursuing her MFA graduate degree in Film & Media Production at the University of Texas, Erica continues to explore the world around her through film and food. Here work can be seen here: Vimeo

Daniel Perera is a researcher-militant from Guatemala City currently training in social/visual anthropology and experimental ethnography at The University of Texas at Austin.  He pursues the intersection of theoretical-practical inquiry, collaborative audiovisual expression, creative nonfiction and situated struggles for alternative sociability.  For over a decade in Oaxaca (Mexico) and Guatemala he has been an organizer and advocate for disestablished alternatives to development and education.  His research interests include philanthrocapitalism and infrastructure; the semiotics of parasitism; elites, race and masculinity; whiteness and/as becoming; post-genocide, violence and securitization; politics and aesthetics; visuality and the sensorium; affect; technics and the body; media and mediation; Guatemala and the Americas.  He eats abundant hot chilies, gets easily enthused and has an incurable wanderlust.  Some of his work can be found here.

Racheal M. Rothrock is a doctoral candidate at The University of Texas at Austin. She is majoring in curriculum and instruction and specializing in cultural studies in education with a portfolio in Mexican American studies. She has lived in and around Austin her entire life and her work with marginalized middle and high school students has supported her dissertation research focus on middle school teachers and teaching.

Susan Quesal is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of American Studies at The University of Texas at Austin, where she studies the practice, sense, and formations of home in the present day.  Her dissertation will look at the forms of home inherent to the plantation system of slavery and where, when, and how we can see their resonances in the relationship between blackness and home throughout the 20th century.  In addition to her scholarship, Susan has published creative works in Two With Water and Found: Michigan.

Mack Royal was born on Ground Hog’s Day in 1947.  He moved to Austin in 1957 where his father, Darrell K. Royal, coached the UT Longhorn football team for 20 years. He now resides in Austin, but is far from retired, having spent his youth enjoying the company of those who made  Austin weird. He is presently employed as a paperwork wrangler by the State of Texas. His web presence can be found here.

Joshunda Sanders has been a writer and journalist since 1998. Her writing has appeared in Kirkus ReviewsGawkerPublishers Weekly and Bitch among other print and online publications. Her creative nonfiction has appeared in several anthologies, including Get Out of My Crotch: Twenty-One Writers Respond to America’s War on Women’s Rights and Reproductive HealthStand Our Ground: Poems for Trayvon Martin and Marissa AlexanderClick: When We Knew We Were FeministsHomelands: Women’s Journeys Across Race, Place and Time and Beyond Belief: The Secret Lives of Women in Extreme Religion. She published Single & Happy: The Party of Ones in 2013 and was a TEDCity 2.0 speaker in 2013 (see the 49 minute mark in Session 4). She is working on a memoir tentatively titled The Beautiful Darkness: A Handbook for Orphans and a nonfiction book about race and media scheduled to be published in 2015. Her first published fiction, “Sirens,” appeared in the fall 2013 issue of Bellevue Literary Review. Joshunda is a proud graduate of Emma Willard School, Vassar College and the University of Texas at Austin, where she earned a Master’s of Science in Information Studies in 2009.

Jo Ann Santangelo is a multimedia photographer and visual storyteller who documents everyday life in hidden and marginalized communities. Jo Ann spent her childhood in Boston’s Italian-working class neighborhood known as the North End. Surrounded by unforgettable characters in a constantly changing community, she began taking photographs and discovered what she was meant to do: move organically through neighborhoods, talking to people and letting them reveal their isolation, their bonds, and their humanity on film. Jo Ann resides in Austin, Texas where she continues to work as freelance photographer and collaborates with local and national non profit organizations to tell their stories. She is currently working on a new body of work, a collaboration with the Sustainable Food Center: Grow, Share, Prepare, documenting the vibrant local, sustainable food system in Central Texas and continues to capture Austin Seen, in progress…

Derek Sayer is a professor of history at Lancaster University in the UK and the author of the widely praised new book, Prague: Capital of the Twentieth Century.

Michael F. Scully came to Austin in 1995 by way of New York and San Francisco. A former trial lawyer, he has a Ph.D. in American Studies from UT-Austin. In addition to Cactus Burning, he’s the author of The Never-Ending Revival: Rounder Records and the Folk Alliance (University of Illinois Press, 2008). For more information on community preservation, take a look at the offerings of theInstitute for Local Self-Reliance.

Barry Shank is Chair of the Department of Comparative Studies at the Ohio State University where he teaches courses on popular music, cultural theory and American studies.  He is the author of the forthcoming The Political Force of Musical Beauty from Duke University Press.

Jonathan Silverman is an Associate Professor of English and Co-Director of American Studies at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. He is the author of Nine Choices: Johnny Cash and American Culture (University of Massachusetts Press, 2010) and the co-author of The World Is a Text (Pearson, 2012), now in its fourth edition. He recently served as a Fulbright Roving Scholar in American Studies in Norway.

Rachel Skov is a native Houstonian who graduated from the University of Houston with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting. Her website features most of her past and current works.

Lacey Smith is a fourth-year French and geography double major at the University of Texas at Austin.

Katie Stewart writes and teaches on affect, the ordinary, the senses, and modes of ethnographic engagement based on curiosity and attachment. Her first book, A Space on the Side of the Road: Cultural Poetics in an ‘Other’ America (Princeton University Press, 1996) portrays a dense and textured layering of sense and form laid down in social use. Ordinary Affects (Duke University Press, 2007) maps the force, or affects, of encounters, desires, bodily states, dream worlds, and modes of attention and distraction in the composition and suffering of present moments lived as immanent events. Her current project, Atmospheric Attunements, tries to approach ways of collective living through or sensing out. An attunement that is also a worlding. These works are experiments that write from the intensities in things, asking what potential modes of knowing, relating or attending to things are already being enacted and imagined in ordinary ways of living.

Frank Strong completed his PhD in the program in Comparative Literature at the University of Texas at Austin, studying music and archive in literature. He currently teaches at KIPP Austin.

Rachel Stuckey is a multimedia artist and current MFA student in Transmedia at the University of Texas. She is also a programmer for Experimental Response Cinema and a third-generation Austinite who fondly recalls the blazing (and somewhat inappropriate) glory of the 37th St. lights during their heyday.

Andrew Takano is an aerospace engineering graduate student at the University of Texas at Austin. While he spends his days teaching and researching, his off time is wholly dedicated to pursuing his passion for photography and cinematography. More of his work can be found here.

Adam J. Tallman is a Ph.D. Student in Linguistics at UT Austin and a member of UT’s Graduate Student Assembly.

Álvaro Torres is Costa Rican, born of a Guatemalan father, a Costa Rican mother and Nicaraguan grandparents. He studied economics at the University of Costa Rica, followed by graduate studies in political ecology and development.  After living in the Osa Peninsula, he decided to learn the craft of filmmaking.  He studied at the Northwest Center in Portland-Oregon for two years, and is currently finishing the Master’s program in Filmmaking at the University of Texas at Austin (May 2014).  His passions outside of film include poetry, beer, scripts, soccer, contradictions and the crust at the bottom of pans.  Some of his work can be found here.

Eliot Tretter is Assistant Professor of Geography and Undergraduate Advisor of the Urban Studies Program at the University of Calgary. Before coming to UofC, he was a Lecturer at the University of Texas at Austin. His research focuses on the political economy of urban development, especially in the emerging fields of critical sustainability and knowledge studies. He received his PhD in Geography from Johns Hopkins University. His academic work has appeared in the Journal of the Urban Affairs, the International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Antipode, Geopolitics, The Professional Geographer, Urban Studies, and Environment, Space, and Place. He is the author of Austin Restricted: Progressivism, Zoning, Private Racial Covenants, and the Making of a Racially Segregated City and Shadows of a Sunbelt City: the Environment Racism, and the Knowledge Economy, University of Georgia.

Riley Triggs is a practicing architect and former professor at the University of Texas. He received his professional degree in architecture from UT and a graduate degree in architecture from Rice University where he explored the emotional space shared between humans and architecture. He is currently pursuing a PhD in sustainable architecture about place, environment and building performance. He is on the SXSW advisory board and is a founding board member of the MidTexMod regional chapter of DOCOMOMO, the international group for the documentation and conservation of buildings, sites, and neighborhoods of the modern movement.

Olivia Vale calls Austin home, but has grown up all over the world. She is a citizen of the UK and Canada. Her images have a sociological emphasis, and she shoots with an eye that aims to render the everyday magical. As well as documenting life and culture, she’s an award-winning documentary wedding photographer in Austin. Her work can be seen here and here.

Jeannette Vaught is an American Studies Ph.D. Candidate at the University of Texas at Austin, a former equine veterinary technician, and a lifelong horsewoman. Her research focuses on the intersections of animals, science, and American culture. She is currently finishing her dissertation, “Science, Animals, and Profit-Making in the American Rodeo Arena.” Her latest publication is Materia Medica: Technology, Vaccination, and Antivivisection in Jazz Age Philadelphia,” and can be found in the September 2013 special issue of the American Quarterly. Her horse, Dallas, remains unimpressed, as he is more concerned with securing a steady supply of apples and belly scratches.

David Villarreal is a Ph.D. Candidate in History at UT Austin and President of the Graduate Student Assembly.

A Pennsylvania native and a Boston transplant, Elizabeth Walsh has been proud to call the Holly Neighborhood home since 2006 when she moved to Austin to study environmental justice and sustainable community development.   As a doctoral candidate in the Community and Regional Planning (CRP) Program and the interdisciplinary Indoor Environmental Science and Engineering Program at the University of Texas at Austin, her dissertation research investigates how the design of low-income home renovation programs might enhance capacity for environmental justice and resilience in centrally located, gentrifying neighborhoods.  Elizabeth is the co-founder of the Holly Neighbors Helping Neighbors initiative, a neighborhood, volunteer-based, green home renovation program intended to decrease utility bills while increasing health and safety. As a master’s student in CRP at UT, Elizabeth worked with classmates, PODER, and students at Zavala elementary to develop the East Austin Environmental Justice Project, a community mapping initiative focusing on children’s perceptions of environmental hazards. Prior to her move to Austin, Elizabeth earned a BA in Peace and Justice Studies with an Economics minor at Wellesley College, and worked at the Urban Ecology Institute where she led community forestry efforts.   In her free-time, Elizabeth serves as the Secretary of the Holly Neighborhood Coalition and helps lead the East Feast Coalition, a network of East Austin neighbors committed to growing healthy food and communities together, including establishing the first food forest in a public park in Austin.  She also volunteers as a board member with EcoRise Youth Innovations, a nonprofit that educates youth in the fundamentals of sustainable design through renovation of their own schools.  She and her dogs, Brak and Charlie, can easily be found exploring the streets and parks of their neighborhood, visiting with their neighbors along the way.

Tane Ward is the executive director of the Indigenous Cultures Institute and has engaged in indigenous and decolonial activism for over ten years. He studies Activist Anthropology and Native American and Indigenous studies at the University of Texas at Austin, and will receive his Ph.D. in 2014. Tane lives with his wife, daughter and extended family in East Austin, where he is an educator and community organizer.

Scott Webel is co-curator of the Museum of Natural & Artificial Ephemerata in Austin, Texas. He is currently finishing The City of Living Garbage, a guidebook to the urban ecology and aesthetics of his backyard.

Scott Witt tells TEOA the following about himself: “Spending the last 15 years in Advertising, I’ve had the opportunity to travel the world extensively; shooting everything from fashion to portraiture to religious festivals on the disputed borders of India and Pakistan. I’m a New Yorker currently living in the SF Bay Area; and work as a Creative Director making interesting products you probably use every day if you have an iPhone. My photographic style is informed by the traditions of Street, Available Light and Photojournalism – ultimately expressed as Lifestyle Reportage.” His work can be found here.

Yoke-Sum Wong spent nine months in Austin as a Visiting Professor in the Anthropology Department at the University of Texas. She teaches in Lancaster University, UK.

Sasha Zhdanov is a senior at UT graduating in May, 2014, simultaneously majoring in Cultural Human Geography and Russian, Eastern European, and Eurasian Studies. His future plans include attending grad school, which will be one step closer to his eventual Ph.D. His adopted hometown is Moscow, Russia, and he enjoys incorporating Russian geography, history, language, and culture into all of my academic studies. As a non-traditional adult that returned to the university, finding his place in the Universe has been exceptionally fulfilling. Also, Ian, his partner, and Cyka and Bosco, his pups, provide immeasurable amounts of love and support.

One comment on “Contributors

  1. Alfredo
    April 19, 2017

    I can’t bear reading extensive posts, simply because i’ve got a small amount of dislexia, but i actually loved this piece

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