Environmental law has failed spectacularly to protect Appalachia from the ravages of liberal capitalism, and from extractive industries in particular.Remaking Appalachiachronicles such failures, but also puts forth hopeful paths for truly radical change.
Remaking Appalachiabegins with an account of how, over a century ago, laws governing environmental and related issues proved fruitless against the rising power of coal and other industries. Key legal regimes were, in fact, explicitly developed to support favored industrial growth. Aided by law, industry succeeded in maximizing profits not just through profound exploitation of Appalachia’s environment but also through subordination along lines of class, gender, and race. After chronicling such failures and those of liberal development strategies in the region, Stump explores true system change beyond law “reform.” Ecofeminism and ecosocialism undergird this discussion, which involves bottom-up approaches to transcending capitalism that are coordinated from local to global scales.
Nicholas F. Stump is a lifelong West Virginian. His scholarship explores environmental law, critical legal theory, law and social movements, and Appalachian and rural studies. He currently works as a faculty member with the George R. Farmer Jr. Law Library at West Virginia University College of Law.