White Trash

For a 2017 essay titled, "White Trash," The Seventh Wave editors described my work as a meditation on "growing up in Appalachia and feeling torn between identities—who she was supposed to be, who she was allowed to be, who she could be. This piece looks at a desire to be "white trash" instead of the "good kind of Appalachia" and the greater desire to understand both." In this essay, I attempt to connect the political and personal in writing that provokes and challenges both "insiders" and "outsiders" of Appalachia to consider their position and action in culture and time. In addition to reading the essay or a portion of it, as time permits, I'd like to discuss the nuances of the terminology we use to describe the Appalachians, the stigma of that rhetoric, and how re-claiming the rhetoric can perhaps take away its power or, controversially, give it more power.