Postcolonial Ecologies: Literatures of the Environment

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9780195394429: Postcolonial Ecologies: Literatures of the Environment

The first edited collection to bring ecocritical studies into a necessary dialogue with postcolonial literature, this volume offers rich and suggestive ways to explore the relationship between humans and nature around the globe, drawing from texts from Africa and the Caribbean, as well as the Pacific Islands and South Asia. Turning to contemporary works by both well- and little-known postcolonial writers, the diverse contributions highlight the literary imagination as crucial to representing what Eduoard Glissant calls the "aesthetics of the earth." The essays are organized around a group of thematic concerns that engage culture and cultivation, arboriculture and deforestation, the lives of animals, and the relationship between the military and the tourist industry. With chapters that address works by J. M. Coetzee, Kiran Desai, Derek Walcott, Alejo Carpentier, Zakes Mda, and many others, Postcolonial Ecologies makes a remarkable contribution to rethinking the role of the humanities in addressing global environmental issues.

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About the Author:

Elizabeth DeLoughrey is Associate Professor of English at the University of California, Los Angeles. She is the author of Routes and Roots: Navigating Caribbean and Pacific Island Literatures and a coeditor of Caribbean Literature and the Environment: Between Nature and Culture.

George B. Handley, Professor of Humanities at Brigham Young University, is the author of Postslavery Literatures of the Americas and New World Poetics: Nature and the Adamic Imagination of Whitman, Neruda, and Walcott.


"[An] impressive achievement." --American Book Review

"The body of works under consideration in these essays is capacious and diverse...But in its best moments, this collection also engages with physical (contested) spaces and historical trends and events, revealing the social and geographic conditions for the production of literature and literary culture...An essential critique." --Small Axe

"This is a cutting edge work that not only situates ecology and biopolitics firmly at the center of postcolonial studies, but also shows the importance of postcolonial literatures to global debates on climate change and environmental degradation. A superb collection!" --Bill Ashcroft, author of Caliban's Voice: The Transformation of English in Post-Colonial Literatures

"Postcolonial Ecologies, with its outstanding roster of contributors, is a crucial intervention in the internationalisation of ecocriticism and the greening of postcolonialism. Framed by DeLoughrey and Handley's well-informed and lucid introduction, this diverse and formidable collection clarifies the inseparability of environmental issues from neo-colonial relations." --Greg Garrard, author of Ecocriticism

"By now, postcolonialists know that empire ruined landscapes and distorted human connections to nature. This book asks how writers try to undo the thinking that underpinned it all and how critics can point towards something more than reactive protest od misguided celebrations of organic links between the folk and nature...the book succeeds in directing us to some answers." --Journal of Postcolonial Writing

"An important landmark in the expanding field of postcolonial ecocriticism...this collection makes a vital contribution to postcolonial ecocriticism, negotiating crucial debates in the field and generating new categories of analysis that should enliven both postcolonial
and ecocritical studies." --Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment

"A powerful collection of original work that adds to established discussions within ecocritical discourse and pushes postcolonial and ecocritical scholarship toward new topics of crucial importance to global environmental awareness and response. It offers a smart, diverse, and rich contemplation of the role of postcolonial literatures within a global
environmental imagination and politics and clearly points to the possibility of dialogue between ecocritical thought and postcolonial writing. Better yet, it does this while maintaining a wide generic, geographic, theoretical, and historical scope. This book no doubt will make a welcome addition to the shelves of many literary and environmental scholars." --Comparative Literature Studies

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