Meighan Mantei

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

Carleton U.

Grant number

Gr. 10326

Approve Date

April 13, 2022

Project Title

Mantei, Meighan (Carleton U.) "Land, Resources, and a Politic of Affect: Navigating Girlhood in Oil Country"

MEIGHAN MANTEI, then a graduate student at Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada, was awarded funding in April 2022 to aid research on “Land, Resources, and a Politic of Affect: Navigating Girlhood in Oil Country,” supervised by Dr. Virginia Caputo. The aim of this research project was to explore the ways in which girlhood is constituted through embodied markers and affective constellations of (un)belonging and (dis)connection in relation to the local fossil fuel and agricultural industries of southeast Saskatchewan. This research project engaged the methods of ethnographic participant observation, semi-structured interviews and photovoice to make girls subjects of their own stories. Preliminary data shows how a politic of affect works to assemble local notions of girlhood and how concepts of (un)belonging and (dis)connection are deployed through the relationships girls have with humans, more-than-humans and the materialities of land and resources in Saskatchewan. Further, the data highlights how social constructs and relational interdependencies create and maintain expectations for girls’ obligations to and expression of certain ideologies, loyalties, and moralities and how power inequities, institutionalized through affective economies, gender roles, racialization, and social class, ensure that all voices in rural communities do not carry the same weight. This research project contributes to a richer understanding of gendered, classed, and racialized experiences in rural industrialized and extractive communities and can be used by other researchers interested in the experiences of women and girls in these types of contexts.