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This volume showcases the explosive expansion of environmental criticism, which is transforming three areas of broad interest in contemporary literary and cultural studies: science, history, and scale. Visiting texts from the medieval period through the twenty-first century, it brings into focus recent ecocritical concern for the long durations through which environmental imaginations have been shaped. Contributors address environmental institutions and imaginations that complicate conventional rubrics such as the national, local, and global, drawing on both the sciences and the humanities to engage ecological processes such as global climate change, peak oil production, nuclear proliferation, and food scarcity.
Introduction. Stephanie LeMenager, Teresa Shewry, and Ken Hiltner Section I: Science 1. The Mesh. Timothy Morton 2. Posthuman/Postnatural: Ecocriticism and the Sublime in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Paul Outka 3. Revisiting the Virtuoso: Natural History Collectors and Their Passionate Engagement with Nature. Beth Fowkes Tobin 4. Chimerical Figurations at the Monstrous Edges of Species. Jill Casid 5. The City Refigured: Environmental Vision in a Transgenic Age. Allison Carruth Section II: History 6. Ecopoetics and the Origins of English Literature. Alfred K. Siewers 7. Amerindian Eden: the Divine Weekes of Du Bartas. Edward M. Test 8. Erasure by U.S. Legislation: Ruiz de Burton’s Nineteenth Century Novels and the Lost Archive of Mexican American Environmental Knowledge. Priscilla Solis Ybarra 9. Shifting the Center: A Tradition of Environmental Literary Discourse from Africa. Byron Caminero-Santangelo 10. Ecomelancholia: Slavery, War and Black Ecological Imaginings. Jennifer James Section III: Scale 11. Home Again: Peak Oil, Climate Change, and the Aesthetics of Transition. Michael G. Ziser 12. Reclaiming Nimby: Nuclear Waste, Jim Day, and the Rhetoric of Local Resistance. Cheryll Glotfelty 13. Imagining a Chinese Eco-City. Julie Sze and Yi Zhou 14. "No Debt Outstanding": The Postcolonial Politics of Local Food. Susie O’Brien 15. Pathways to the Sea: Involvement and the Commons in Works by Ralph Hotere, Cilla McQueen, Hone Tuwhare, and Ian Wedde. Teresa Shewry Afterword. An Interview with Elaine Scarry