Off-campus UMass Amherst users: To download campus access dissertations, please use the following link to log into our proxy server with your UMass Amherst user name and password.
Non-UMass Amherst users: Please talk to your librarian about requesting this dissertation through interlibrary loan.
Dissertations that have an embargo placed on them will not be available to anyone until the embargo expires.
Author ORCID Identifier
Open Access Dissertation
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Year Degree Awarded
Month Degree Awarded
Linguistic Anthropology | Other Geography | Social and Cultural Anthropology | Social Justice
This dissertation aims to better understand how self-identified trans activists in Atlanta, Georgia find and build community, by using queer and Black feminist community based methodologies such as participant observation, ethnographic interviews, participatory mapping, and auto-ethnography. In particular, I ask 1) How do trans people find and build community, safety, and understanding? 2) How do transgender activists create and enact place making that does not rely on policing and privatization?
To create and maintain safety for wealthy communities in Atlanta, Georgia, systems of policing and privatization are increasing. Although developers, city council members, and legislators promote Atlanta, Georgia as a gay friendly utopia of art and culture, privatization and policing push Black, immigrant, queer, and transgender communities to the fringes of Atlanta geographically, socially, politically, and culturally. This creates a paradox of safety for transgender activists and artists in Atlanta. Faced with transphobia, activists work to build interpersonal and community safety outside of narratives of safety used in privatization and policing.
Capello, Elias, "Liberation and Gravy: An Engaged Ethnography of Queer and Trans Power in Georgia" (2021). Doctoral Dissertations. 2095.