Alexander Zahara


Office: Chat Lab, CS Portable 1017
Telephone: (709) 864-2966
Fax: (709) 864- 3119


Dr. Arn Keeling (Memorial)
Dr. Lianne Leddy (Laurier Brantford)

Committee Members


Research Groups

Northern Exposures (
Toxic Legacies (
Civic Laboratory (
Risk Humanities Network (

Previous Education

Master's of Environmental Studies, Queen's University (Sept 2013- Aug 2015)
Bachelor of Science in Biology (Hons), University of Saskatchewan (April 2012)

Title of Project


Research Project Description

My PhD research draws on critical northern studies, STS, and waste studies to examine how uranium shapes social and material relations in northern Saskatchewan, Canada. Stories about uranium mining have informed how southern Canadians understand and engage with 'the North’: depictions of untamed wilderness—amenable to resource extraction and colonial adventure— and of fragile ecosystems and indigenous populations inform the neo-colonial present. For indigenous people living near abandoned uranium mines, contaminated landscapes physically impact bodies and dictate spaces of social (human-non/in/human) relations. Ongoing protests over nuclear waste disposal sites show a refusal to accept technoscientific safety narratives and highlight the anti-colonial governing practices of self-determining indigenous communities. By focusing on political ecologies of matter, story, and risk, I will examine uranium as 'world making' in the Canadian subarctic.

Research Interests 

-Science and Technology Studies
-Waste studies
-Public understandings of risk
-Political ontologies and the Anthropocene
-Feminist technoscience
-Environmental toxicology


Zahara, A. (Forthcoming). ‘Taima: Risk Governance in the Iqaluit ‘Dumpcano’’ in Sarathy, B., Hamilton, V. and Brodie, J. (eds.) Contested Expertise and Toxic Environments. University of Pittsburg Press.

Hird, M. & Zahara, A. ‘The Arctic Wastes’ (2017) in Grusin, R. (ed) Anthropocene Feminism. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

Liboiron, M., Liboiron F., Wells, E. Richard, N., Zahara, A., Mather, C., Bradshaw, H. & Muchiri, J. (2016) ‘Low rate of plastic ingestion in Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) from Newfoundland destined for human consumption collected through citizen science methods.’ Marine Pollution Bulletin 113: 428-437.

Zahara, A.R.D., & Hird, M.J. (2015). ‘Raven, Dog, Human: Inhuman Colonialism and Unsettling Cosmologies.’ Environmental Humanities 7: 169-190.

Zahara, A.R.D., Michel, N.L, Flahr, L.M, Ejack, L.E, & Morrissey, C.A. (2015) ‘Latent cognitive effects from low-level PCB exposure in juvenile European starlings, Sturnus vulgaris.’ Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry 34 (11): 2513-2522.

Flahr, L., Michel, N., Zahara, A., Jones, P., & Morrissey, C. (2015). Developmental exposure to Aroclor 1254 alters migratory behaviour in juvenile European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris). Environmental Science and Technology 49 (10): 6274-6283.

Other Writing:

Zahara, A., Keeling, A. and T. Bell. (2016). ‘Social Licence to Operate: Background and State of Knowledge Report.’ Department of Geography, Memorial University of Newfoundland: St. John’s.

Zahara, A. ‘Ethnographic Refusal: A How to Guide’. Discard Studies Blog. Published: August 8th, 2016.

Zahara, A. ‘Acknowledging Difference in the Anthropocene: A Response to Kyle Powys Whyte’s Living in Our Ancestors Dystopia’. Boundaries of the Human in the Age of the Life Sciences Blog. Edited by Heather Davis. Published: July 14th, 2016.

Peterson, J. and Zahara, A. ‘Anthropocene Adjustments: Discarding the Technosphere.’ Discard Studies Blog & HKW Anthropocene: Technosphere Issue. Published: May 26th, 2016

Zahara, A. ‘Refusal as Research Method in Discard Studies.’ Discard Studies Blog. Published: March 21st, 2016.

Zahara, A. ‘Bringing Waste to Public Spaces: A Discussion with Artist Keeley Haftner.’ Discard Studies Blog Published: July 14th, 2014.



Department of Geography

230 Elizabeth Ave

St. John's, NL A1B 3X9 CANADA

Tel: (709) 864-2530

Fax: (709) 864-2552