Faculty Biography

Max Ritts

Max Ritts, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Graduate School of Geography
Clark University
Worcester, MA 01610-1477

Office: Room 107, Jefferson Academic Center
Phone: 508-793-7640
Email: mritts@clarku.edu


I am an environmental geographer whose research explores intersections of social power, sensory practice, political economy, and ecological transformation. My in-process book, A Resonant Ecology (under contract with Duke UP), examines the material, affective, and conceptual force of industrial development through situated engagements with sound culture (including eco-acoustics, whalesong, industrial noise, and Indigenous heavy metal). The book is rooted in collaborations with the Gitga'at First Nation (now called British Columbia), where I have been working since 2013. A new collaboration, also with Gitga'at, considers the socio-material impacts of environmental datafication technologies on an unceded marine territory, and asks how contemporary data-sensing cultures are supporting and/or delimiting Indigenous marine stewardship ambitions more generally. With Dr. John Borrows, Dr. Dawn Hoogeveen, and Sue Smitten, I am working on The Raven Stories, an anthology that aims to center the voices of young Indigenous scholars and perspectives in the Academy, based on ten years administering the Harmony Essay Prize in collaboration with the Indigenous legal advocacy RAVEN. I earned my Ph.D. in Geography from the University of British Columbia (2018). Prior to joining Clark, I was a College Research Associate (CRA) at King’s College, University of Cambridge. 

Courses Offered

GEOG 017: Environment and Society   
GEOG 090: Native Americans, Land, and Natural Resources *(Fall 2023)
GEOG 327: The Politics of Sensing

Selected Publications

Ritts, Max, and Michael Simpson (2022). Smart oceans governance: Reconfiguring capitalist, colonial, and environmental relations. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers. https://doi.org/10.1111/tran.12586

Gabrys , Jennifer, Westerlaken, Michelle, Urzedo, Danilo, Ritts, Max and Simlai Trishant (2022) Reworking the political in digital forests: The cosmopolitics of socio-technical worlds.  Progress in Environmental Geography 1, 58-83

Ritts, Max and Karen Bakker (2021) "Conservation acoustics: Animal sounds, audible natures, cheap nature." Geoforum 124, 144-155.