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Dr Naomi R MillnerBA(Cantab.), MSc(Bristol), PhD(Bristol)

Lecturer in Human Geography

Naomi Millner

Dr Naomi R MillnerBA(Cantab.), MSc(Bristol), PhD(Bristol)

Lecturer in Human Geography

Member of

Research interests

I am a human geographer who works primarily in the following areas:

  • Post-colonial, de-colonial and political ecology approaches to environmental politics, with a focus on the politics of knowledge

  • The cultural politics of race, nature and social exclusion

  • Food justice, agrarian social movements and food sovereignty, especially in the context of Central America

  • Concepts of 'commons' and 'commoning'

  • Migration, border politics and transnational forms of belonging

  • Theories of politics and aesthetics, especially through Walter Benjamin and Jacques Rancière

  • Community education, radical education and pedagogies for social change, including feminist approaches 


My current work focuses on the conditions of emergence for transnational agrarian movements, including food sovereignty, as well as community-managed forms of environmental governance. I am interested in the relationships of specific practices of 'bottom up' environmental conservation with neoliberal (market) economic forms of regulation, and the possibilities for political and cultural autonomy these allow or foreclose.

In this sense the intersection of notions of 'race' and 'nature' are central to my empirical projects, which draw on feminist insights, theories of translation, and cultural theory to emphasise how some voices and forms of knowledge obtain legitimacy and visibility over others. In particular I draw on theorists of politics and aesthetics such as Walter Benjamin and Jacques Rancière, as well as post-colonial accounts of literature, to explore how the 'mediation' of the world, through image, literature, and performance, affects political possibility. I also use these theories to revisit notions of 'class' and 'consciousness,' mobilised in Marxist approaches to identify patterns of structural social exclusion, with fresh attention to the multiple axes of difference through which exclusion takes place (including gender, race, and citizenship status), as well as the role of cross-border mobilities in constituting alternatives.

Methodologically I mobilise ethnographic and participatory approaches in combination with oral histories and archival work to explore and elicit dimensions of situated cultural struggle. Insodoing I aim to contribute toward the co-creation of social histories and resistance practices that challenge colonial and exclusionary power geometries.

Structured keywords and research groupings

  • Global Political Economy
  • International Development
  • Cabot Institute Food Security Research
  • Cabot Institute Environmental Change Research
  • Migration Mobilities Bristol

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Postal address:
University Road
United Kingdom