This is a call for article-length scholarly contributions for inclusion in a proposed anthology broadly focused on the entangled relationship between poetries and ecologies.
Jonathan Skinner’s edited journal, ecopoetics, published between 2001 and 2007, constituted a fertile platform of enquiry into the relationship between poetry and the environment, its meaning, possibilities, modus operandi, processes, objectives, tactics, and responses. Contributors proposed and presented writing that often opposed the traditional stance of nature poetry, which seeks to possess the natural world through the deployment of the word, casting a figurative net on a vanquished wilderness.
In “The Ecology of Poetry,” Marcella Durand offered a tentative definition to some of the concerns of the journal: “Ecological poetry is much like ecological living—it recycles materials, functions with an intense awareness of space, seeks an equality of value between all living and unliving things, explores multiple perspectives as an attempt to subvert the dominant paradigms of mono-perception, consumption and hierarchy, and utilizes powers of concentration to increase lucidity and attain a more transparent, less anthropocentric mode of existence.”
Durand’s list proposes not only a change in modes of art-making, but seeks to affect thought processes in its desire to “subvert,” “explore,” “utilize,” and “recycle.” It is equally directed to ideas and perceptions, attitudes toward the history of literature—by way of recycling others’ writing—and the world of living and unliving things.
We seek essays that deal with poetries from diverse cultural traditions and historical epochs, and that position themselves in opposition to, and/or in conversation with, the traditions of nature poetry. We invite contributions that consider, assess, analyze, and/or engage with any of the following (this list is by no means exhaustive):
- The ways poetries seek to activate the environment, the object world of things, and organic forms
- How the environment galvanizes poetic form
- The relationship of matter and thought
- The ways poetry functions as an act of transference, translation, and transposition
- The ways figurative devices enable poetry to show the continuity and progression between the biological body and the symbolic realm, and vice-versa
- How poetry attempts to bridge, mediate, or translate between the “language” of beings and things, and the language of humans
- How poetry seeks to theorize a new consciousness of belonging among beings so as to destabilize the split between nature and culture, the human and the ecosystem
- Poetry’s response to extinction
- Poetry in the “Anthropocene”
- The usefulness of biological categories and concepts for an understanding of the relation between poetry and the environment
- How different cultural perspectives shift and alter the relationship of poetry and the environment
- Different historical responses, attitudes, engagements with nature writing
- Definitions of ecopoetics: writing from, with, to, alongside, and/or within nature
- The ways poetry functions as a mediator between the environment and language
- Clashing and competing cultural perspectives on ecopoetics
- Indigenous responses to ecopoetics
- Ecofeminism and ecopoetics
- Ecopoetics, place, and land politics
Please email a 500-word abstract, or a 8,000-11,000-word (including notes) paper along with a short bio to firstname.lastname@example.org by April 15, 2016.
Please note that Douglas A. Vakoch, editor of the Ecocritical Theory and Practice Series published by Lexington Books (a subsidiary of Rowman and Littlefield) has encouraged the development of this project. While he cannot commit without a full proposal, he has informally expressed great interest in seeing the book through to publication.
Email a 500-word abstract, or a 8,000-11,000-word (including notes) paper and a short bio to email@example.com by April 15, 2016.