Extractivism and Petro-theology, with Terra Schwerin Rowe

Sam Mickey

This episode of Spotlights features Terra Schwerin Rowe, PhD, Associate Professor in the Philosophy and Religion Department at the University of North Texas. We discuss her most recent book, Of Modern Extraction: Experiments in Critical Petro-theology (Bloomsbury, 2022), where she draws on energy humanities in an intersectional-feminist analysis of extractivism, exploring material and discursive intersections of oil, religion, white supremacy, colonialism, and capitalism. A key take-away is that US citizens have not only made economic, technological, and infrastructural investments in oil, they've also made theological investments in oil that still inform 21st-century high energy culture. Consequently, in the pursuit of alternative energy imaginaries and more just energy cultures, these spiritual-theological investments will also need critical analysis and creative re-interpretation.

Watch the episode below or listen to it here.

An archive of previous episodes can be found here, with audio versions here and anywhere podcasts are available (e.g., Apple Podcast, Spotify, Pandora, etc.).