Irus Braverman

Listing Threatened Species project

Alabama Beach Mouse (photo from USFWS) Tagged box turtle (photo from USFWS) Red wolf (photo from USFWS) Mission blue butterfly (photo from USFWS) Penisular pronghorn (photo from USFWS)

The idea that every species should be assessed, ranked, and listed according to its projected risk of extinction is now a commonly accepted practice in conservation. By ranking species in a linear progression from the least to the most endangered, threatened species lists elevate listed nonhuman species from the realm of biological life into that of a political life that is both worth saving and worth grieving. My project explores the biopolitical nature of such lists, the affirmative properties, and their acute relevance for understanding the governance of entire nonhuman species. I argue that threatened species lists reinforce biopolitical differentiation not only between perceivably distinct nonhuman species but also between Homo sapiens and nonhuman species. Listing threatened species becomes a way to affirm and justify that life which is more and most important to save.


Book chapters:

(2016). "The Legal Life of Threatened Species Lists." In Irus Braverman (ed.), Lively Legalities: Animals, Biopolitics, Law. (draft)

(2015). "Is the Puerto Rican Parrot Worth Saving? The Biopolitics of Endagernment and Grievability." In Kathryn Gillespie and Patricia Lopez (eds.), Economies of Death (forthcoming Routledge/Earthscan)

(2015). "En-Listing Life: Red is the Color of Threatened Species Lists." In Rosemarie Collard and Kathryn Gillespie (eds.), Critical Animal Geographies (forthcoming, Routledge/Earthscan). [SSRN]

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