Michael Pesses

Michael Pesses
Antelope Valley Community College · Geography

PhD

About

14
Publications
4,994
Reads
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52
Citations
Introduction
My current research interests primarily revolve around the ideology of American automobility. Some of this work is based in participant observation and some in media studies.
Additional affiliations
August 2017 - present
Antelope Valley Community College
Position
  • Professor
August 2014 - August 2017
Antelope Valley Community College
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
August 2012 - August 2014
Antelope Valley Community College
Position
  • Professor (Assistant)
Education
January 2016 - January 2020
Claremont Graduate University
Field of study
  • Cultural Studies
August 2005 - December 2007
January 1999 - June 2001
University of California, Los Angeles
Field of study
  • Anthropology

Publications

Publications (14)
Book
Full-text available
Ecomobilities examines the ideological connections between automobiles, the environment, and the end of the world, focusing on the car’s inseparability from modern life. Through popular films addressing both mobilities and environmental disasters, Ecomobilities reveals how American automobility has influenced responses to warming temperatures and s...
Article
Full-text available
This paper is a genealogy of emergences within environmental thought of who belongs in nature. Such a project reveals that there are specific nodes of environmental knowledge. Specifically, I will introduce the trap of conservationist John Muir, in which his hostile attitudes towards American Indians have gone unexamined by geographers and preserva...
Article
Full-text available
In the Preacher comic book series, writer Garth Ennis and artist Steve Dillon appear to conjure every type of blasphemy against the Christian church as possible. Ennis and Dillon, however, use the mythos of John Wayne and the American West to suggest a male ethics that incorporates pleasure as a tactic in relations of power. Rather than suggest a r...
Article
Full-text available
Mad Max: Fury Road has been critiqued for its feminist, masculine, biblical, and environmental themes, but these critiques fail to engage with the connection between humans, machines, and the Earth in Fury Road. Nuclear technology may have produced the apocalyptic wasteland in which the film is set, but machines and industrial technology remain cou...
Article
Full-text available
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Using Sara Ahmed's Queer Phenomenology: Orientations, Objects, Others as a framework, I aim to demonstrate a cartographic queer phenomenology. I will “attend to the background” of the modern world map and see how this object's “conditions of emergence” can strengthen Ahmed’s argument that “orientations shape not only how we inhabit space, but how w...
Article
Full-text available
The Negro Motorist Green Books were published by Victor H. Green & Company between 1936 and 1967. The books were references for black motorists on road trips to help them avoid dangerous towns, racist establishments, and the effects of a segregated America. This paper explores these books and situates them within the greater context of the American...
Article
Full-text available
The growl of Tom Waits is unmistakable. The music is theatrical in nature; it tells the tales of assorted characters and uses the mellow plucking of a banjo or a cacophony of mismatched instruments to invoke the right mood for the story. His earlier albums evoke images of American working class men and women; his later evoke images of the surreal a...
Article
Full-text available
Using the framework of 'automobility' as outlined by Sheller and Urry, this arti-cle uses the bicycle tour to explore one way the middle class mediates the automobile's domi-nance of the American landscape. The material history of the American road is first placed into the current automobilities discourse and then used to situate the bicycle tour....

Projects

Projects (2)
Project
I am currently developing a digital textbook for introductory physical geography courses. The goal is to produce a resource for students that has a unique voice, is attentive to diverse cultural, racial, and ideological perspectives, and incorporates meaningful and dynamic exercises.
Project
I am currently interested in off-roading as a practice of automobility in the United States. My questions include: How does driving a four-wheel drive vehicle ‘off-road’ influence daily uses of automobiles on paved roads? How do those driving through wilderness spaces experience nature? How are systems of knowledge about the environment read, understood, challenged, by these four-wheelers? Is this practice compliance with, resistance to, or something in between automobility ideologies? I am also fascinated by the Rubicon Trail, a historical route through the Sierra Nevada that saw its first automobile in 1908 and now can only be traversed by modified four-wheel drive vehicles. Is the road an urbanized or a natural space? Can it be both? Is this a heterotopia? Liminal space?