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Queering the Climate Conversation

Emily Jessop

    If you aren’t previously familiar, the pink triangle (traditionally depicted upside down) was the symbol LGBTQ+ folks wore in concentration camps during the Holocaust. Since then, the LGBTQ+ community has reclaimed the symbol as a notion of hope and resilience, much like we’ve done with the word queer.The queer community has reclaimed and enhanced the symbol of the pink triangle by flipping it right side up and encircling it with a green ring. It is used as a symbol to show alliance with queer rights and safe spaces, free from discrimination. Minority communities often recycle what has previously oppressed them.

    The direction of the triangle also holds symbolic meaning. When the triangle is shown pointing down, it is in remembrance of the LGBTQ+ lives lost in the Holocaust in the 1940s, the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s, violence toward queer folks, etc. When the triangle points up, it is in action.

    I have decided to depict my re-creation of the triangle pointing forward, in appreciation for the paths that queer people have paved, and in preparation for what is currently being done and what will be done. This project is forward-focused and thankful of those who have come before me. I am forward-focused and thankful for those who have come before me.

    My inclusion of environmental and climate conversations with queer identities are two identities that most wouldn’t naturally think to put together . Let’s challenge that. Everyone is crafted from multifaceted identities that make them different and valuable in this society. Inclusion of all identities and experiences is important in creating change, whether it’s creating a resource center on campus, or having a conversation about who climate change effects.


    Land ethic, the relationships between people and land are intertwined: care for people cannot be separated from care for the land. A land ethic is a moral code of conduct that grows out of these interconnected caring relationships. We must engage in thoughtful dialog with each other, inviting a diversity of perspectives, experiences, and backgrounds. Together, we can form a land ethic that can be passed down to future generations.

Aldo Leopold

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