Virginia Tech professor to speak on Shenandoah National Park at BC

Dr. Katrina Powell, director of the Women’s and Gender Studies Program at Virginia Tech, will speak on “Place, Identity, and Eminent Domain: Letters from Shenandoah National Park” at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 12, in Cole Hall at Bridgewater College.

Powell’s The Anguish of Displacement and edited collection Answer at Once analyze the displacement narratives of families forced from their homes in the 1930s to form the Shenandoah National Park.

By studying the hand-written letters displaced residents sent to the government, Powell’s research examines how residents represented themselves to state and park officials as their relocations approached.

Powell served as assistant producer of Richard Knox Robinson’s documentary film “Rothstein’s First Assignment,” which includes oral history interviews with descendants of displaced families.

Her current research expands her work on localized displacement to examine the transnational implication of displacement narratives and the ways that identity, representation and narrative are enacted across seemingly disparate displacement events such as eminent domain law, natural disaster and civil unrest.

Powell earned a doctorate in rhetoric and composition from the University of Louisville. She is an associate professor of English at Virginia Tech.

The program is open to the public at no charge.

Bridgewater College is a private, four-year liberal arts college located in the Central Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. Founded in 1880, it was the state’s first private, coeducational college. Today, Bridgewater College is home to approximately 1,750 undergraduate students.

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