Annual Meeting Opening Session & Presidential Plenary

Type: Plenary
Sponsor Groups: American Association of Geographers
Poster #:
Day: 4/10/2018
Start / End Time: 6:30 PM / 8:30 PM
Room: Grand Ballroom C, Sheraton, 5th Floor
Organizers: The American Association of Geographers
Chairs: Derek Alderman


Annual Meeting Opening Session

Welcoming Remarks: Douglas Richardson, AAG Executive Director

Welcome to New Orleans: LaToya Cantrell, New Orleans Mayor-Elect

Presidential Plenary: “When the Big Easy Isn’t So Easy: Learning from New Orleans' Geographies of Struggle”

AAG President Derek Alderman's 2018 presidential plenary is titled, When the Big Easy Isn’t So Easy: Learning from New Orleans’ Geographies of Struggle. Beyond merely providing hotels, restaurants, and bars, the hosting cities of AAG meetings offer important moments to delve into the scientific value of these locations and to learn about the historical and contemporary forces and tensions that shape their communities and spaces. Doing so not only advances our intellectual understanding of place but also has the potential to create a more responsible and empathetic visitor and academic conference citizen—someone who can appreciate, analyze, and be affected by the people and places that exist beyond tourism brochures found in hotel lobbies.

When the Big Easy Isn’t So Easy creates a space to explore the role of struggle in the making, unmaking, and remaking of New Orleans. The city’s development has long been a power-laden process in which multiple identities, histories, and social interests converge, mix, but also clash. A wide range of racial, ethnic, class, and environmental struggles have shaped New Orleans in complex ways, making it a site of vulnerability, inequality, and displacement and at the same time a place of resourcefulness, creative surviving and living, and social justice activism.

Panelists, all of whom are civically engaged scholars and gifted geographic storytellers, will highlight not only the (Post) Katrina experience but also the deeper historical and geographic roots of struggle in New Orleans. They will take the audience to evocative spaces and moments, using the opening session to open broader discussions of issues such as black lives and geographies, disaster response and recovery, food justice, water-society relations, the politics of public memory, and urban political economy. Panelists will reflect on the larger academic-political lessons from New Orleans, offer ideas for (re)imagining the future of this city and others, and demonstrate how geographers can learn from and with the host cities for our AAG meetings.

In addition to President Alderman, panelists will include: Laura Pulido, Craig Colten, Richard Campanella, Michael Crutcher Jr, Catarina Passidomo, Rebecca Sheehan.

The Presidential Plenary will take place on Tuesday, April 10, 2018 in the Grand Ballroom at the Sheraton Hotel from 6:30 - 8:30 pm.


Type Details Minutes Start Time
Welcoming Remarks Douglas Richardson American Association of Geographers 10 6:30 PM
Welcome to New Orleans LaToya Cantrell Mayor-Elect of New Orleans 10 6:40 PM
Introduction Derek Alderman University of Tennessee 10 6:50 PM
Speaker Laura Pulido University of Oregon - Eugene, OR 15 7:00 PM
Speaker Craig Colten Louisiana State University 15 7:15 PM
Speaker Michael Crutcher 15 7:30 PM
Speaker Catarina Passidomo University of Mississippi 15 7:45 PM
Speaker Rebecca Sheehan Oklahoma State University 15 8:00 PM

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