Growing Resistance: Community Gardens as Counter Spaces

dc.contributor.advisorHalvaksz, Jamon A.
dc.contributor.authorMicek, Amanda
dc.contributor.committeeMemberGallagher, Patrick
dc.contributor.committeeMemberFlaherty, Devon
dc.date.accessioned2024-02-12T15:39:57Z
dc.date.available2024-02-12T15:39:57Z
dc.date.issued2022
dc.descriptionThis item is available only to currently enrolled UTSA students, faculty or staff. To download, navigate to Log In in the top right-hand corner of this screen, then select Log in with my UTSA ID.
dc.description.abstractAs the COVID-19 pandemic keeps many away from public indoor spaces there is increase in both the number of and the interaction with community gardens. Thus, I argue that these spaces are becoming increasingly important for anthropological study because of their expansion and potential to create sociopolitical change. While various fields from geography to food studies have examined gardens in the context of food access, I will address gaps in the literature by studying the capacity of garden spaces to collectivize like-minded individuals and provide an alternative to capitalism. Drawing on my ethnographic research, I argue that community gardens, like Gardopia Gardens in San Antonio, function as anti-capitalist counter spaces (Lefebvre 1991). This designator is deserved as these spaces: challenge the urban/rural divide, help individuals become both increasingly self-sustaining and community oriented, provide an alternative food source to grocery chains and big agribusinesses, queer the student/ teacher dichotomy, value communal relationships through the practice of commoning, deny profit in favor of donations, and have the potential to change both individual and group mindset through educational practices. Within this discussion I also examine the motivation of unpaid volunteers and the importance of nonhuman actors to further argue that community gardens are anti-capitalist as they challenge capitalist notions of labor and the domination of more-than-humans. The aim of this research is to highlight these creative spaces and their productive capacity to create systemic change in the United States' food system.
dc.description.departmentAnthropology
dc.format.extent74 pages
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/pdf
dc.identifier.urihttps://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12588/4510
dc.languageen
dc.subjectcommunity gardens
dc.subjectcounter spaces
dc.subjectfood apartheid
dc.subjectfood justice
dc.subjectgarden based learning
dc.subjectnonhuman actors
dc.subject.classificationCultural anthropology
dc.subject.classificationAgriculture education
dc.subject.classificationEnvironmental studies
dc.titleGrowing Resistance: Community Gardens as Counter Spaces
dc.typeThesis
dc.type.dcmiText
dcterms.accessRightspq_closed
thesis.degree.departmentAnthropology
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Texas at San Antonio
thesis.degree.levelMasters
thesis.degree.nameMaster of Arts

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