Pavithra Vasudevan

  • Graduate student
  • University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
  • Website: n/a

Pavithra Vasudevan is a scholar, activist and educator committed to critique, creativity, and collaboration in struggling for justice. A PhD student in the Department of Geography at UNC-Chapel Hill, Pavithra’s work focuses on the stuff of environmental justice: toxicity, racism and movements. She is interested in exploring the political and cultural aspects of how people understand and relate with their environments, drawing on feminist geography, political ecology, and critical theories of racism and power. Pavithra incorporates performance, audiovisuals and other arts-based methods to conduct research in collaboration with affected communities. As part of her M.A. research on Warren County, NC, the ‘birthplace of environmental justice’, she co-created a short film with Rev. William Kearney titled “Remembering Kearneytown” (available: She has written about this collaboration as a case study of critical/performance ethnography and as a method of filmmaking to intervene in environmental racism. Pavithra supports the statewide advocacy organization North Carolina Environmental Justice Network as a member of the Planning Committee. She is fortunate to be supported financially by a National Science Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grant, the Pruitt Dissertation Fellowship from the Society of Women Geographers, a Community Engagement Fellowship from the Carolina Center for Public Service, and a seed grant from the UNC-Chapel Hill Graduate Certificate in Participatory Research.