Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Writing Program


Collin Brooke


Cultural Rhetoric;Emergence;Settler Colonialism

Subject Categories

Arts and Humanities | Rhetoric and Composition


This dissertation establishes a settler-colonial ontological frame work through the melding of Western storytelling genre conventions with Indigenous storytelling methods. Through a series of interconnected non-fiction stories, this framework demonstrates how to directly engage with a settler-colonial subject position by building a method of constellation of personal experience in order to understand options beyond capitalism and settler-colonial complacency. This method is then applied to two geographic locations, the Standing Rock Reservation and Flint, MI. The author shares connections and builds stories through connections with the landscape and specific timeframes (the Water Protectors movement at Standing Rock and the Flint Water Crisis at Flint). Through the examining of personal relationships (framed as the metaphor of roots), communal relationships (framed as the metaphor of waterways), and global relationships (framed as the metaphor of mountains), there are specific moments highlighted where democracy fails and the options open for frameworks beyond are available. This work frames one of the options as decolonality. In these moments of failure, settler-colonial Interventions become a possible lens for these options. Settler-colonial interventions are moments where it is possible to utilize emergence as a framework to understand one’s position in settler-colonialism and work with it and beyond to imagine options beyond a settler-colonial future.


Open Access