Human-Nature Interactions in the New Normal World: A Study of Selected Pandemic Poems (Published)
The global outbreak of the Corona Virus disease in this 21st Century not only shocked the sensibilities of people but also introduced emerging patterns of behaviour and interactions that have become the new normal. One of such altered interactions is in the aspect of human-nature relations. Many scholars have churned out volumes on the scope and implications of human activities on the environment; others have linked human-induced environmental challenges to patriarchal social conditioning and proposed the dismantling of all forms of dualisms, especially the human-nature dualism. But not many have represented the disposition of humans to the natural environment in the new normal world. Hence, this paper examines the selected pandemic poems in the light of emerging patterns of interaction with the environment, using the eco-critical theory. The study concludes that the selected poets have presented the new normal as a panacea to the lingering environmental challenges which have defied many solutions in the past decades and recommends further foray into environmentally friendly adaptation discourse in the new normal world. It is important for promoting the study of content and style in eco-critical discourse and for raising consciousness towards environmental sustainability.
Onyechigoziri Chikere and Okachukwu Onuah Wosu (2022) Human-Nature Interactions in the New Normal World: A Study of Selected Pandemic Poems, European Journal of English Language and Literature Studies, Vol.10, No.7, pp.1-8
Keywords: Ecocriticism, Environmental Justice, Human nature, new normal world
Ecofeminist Colourings in the Works of Chinua Achebe and Thomas Hardy (Published)
The current global environmental crises urged me to investigate the manner in which writers from different backgrounds represent man’s relationship with nature in their texts and how they tie it to feminist dynamics. More precisely, the work focuses on the Nigerian writer Chinua Achebe’s trilogy Things Fall Apart, No Longer at Ease and Arrow of God and the English writer Thomas Hardy’s The Mayor of Casterbridge, Tess of the D’Urbervilles and Jude the Obscure. The research question that guides the work is: how do Chinua Achebe and Thomas Hardy represent the connection between environmental issues and gender considerations? The hypothesis is based on the premise that the two authors represent the environment and feminine realities with hints to the need for more protection. Second Wave Ecocriticism as outlined by Lawrence Buell and Ecofeminism according to Paul Sanders Quick constitute the theoretical framework while the Comparative Approach of Tötösy de Zepetnek that stresses on an international dimension is the methodology used to bring out the ecofeminist visions of the two writers in the above-mentioned texts.
Keywords: Comparative Analysis, Degradation, Ecocriticism, Ecofeminism, Environment, Fiction, Protection, Vision
Romantic Ecologism: Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart and the False Eco-criticism Tributes (Published)
Colonial and postcolonial environmental criticisms of Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart (TFA) have attributed to the novel eco-critical consciousness of significance, apparently ignoring the concern for environmental sustainability that is the foundation of current arts and humanities endeavour into the environmental discourses. On the strength of representations of human and non-human nature in the novel, critics have adjudged the novel to be a quintessence of the ecocritical ideal. Against some of the conceptual underpinnings of foremost ecocriticism postulations, ecological consciousness attributed to TFA are contested in this present study as false and misleading. The utilitarian values of ecocriticism and the remediating goal of literature in environmental studies, which are absent in the primary text and many of its secondary readings, are recommended as the basis for attributing ecocritical consciousness to texts. Natural entities and practices in the novel are contested as contextualization devices, employed by the author, for situating characters and events in their organic, pre-colonial African setting, and are described in this paper as the lost ecological values of Africa that are decried by contemporary critics of the global impacts of the science and technological cultures on the environment. This study employs ecocriticism as its theoretical basis.
Keywords: African literature, Chinua Achebe, Ecocriticism, Environment, Literature, postcolonial literature
Ecophobia from a Postcolonial Point Of View in Treasure Island and “Jack and the Beanstalk”: A Comparative Study (Published)
This study aims at analyzing the ecophobia in Stevenson’s Treasure Island and Jacobs’s “Jack and the Beanstalk” from a postcolonial point of view. Both literary works reflect how the colonizers fear the colonized’s nature due to the ideological and cultural conflicts between the colonizers and the colonized. The two works emphasize the idea that the colonizers’ ecophobia is also a result of the western negative stereotypes about the colonized people and their nature, in which the colonized are portrayed as uncivilized and frightening. The study methodology is based on the comparative close reading analysis. The study concludes that the ecophobia in both the literary works is a reaction to the negative colonial stereotypes about the colonized and to the ideological and cultural conflict between the colonizers and the colonized.
Keywords: Colonial, Ecocriticism, Ecophobia, educational purposes, ideological and cultural conflict, negative stereotypes, postcolonial, uncivilized
AN EXPLORATION OF THE HERMENEUTICAL PHASES OF ECOCRITICISM (Published)
The trajectory of ecocritical hermeneutics is calibrated into phases. The phases, labeled as “waves” is not a strict consecutive sequence of one wave after another. It is a stretch of overlapping phases in the disciplinary development of the field. The perceptions of the waves are premised on the changing dynamics of nature in relation to human activities. Works that constituted the zero wave showed ecocritical hermeneutics suspected to be literary before the word “Eco criticism” was coined in 1978. The first wave rooted in deep ecology enjoins nature preservation and protection. If advocated the static stability of nature and its dialectical relationship with man. It privileged the Universalist perception of nature and the focus on nature writing/non-fiction texts in the United States of America, which accounted for the narrowness of the phase. The perception of the environment beyond the “ natural” consequent upon technological development and urbanization, thus, broadening the re-theorising of nature to incorporate vestiges of nature in cities and texts not necessarily interested in the natural environment set forth the phase of second wave. The wave creates awareness of ecological despoilation and the disproportionate effect of environment pollution on certain races (environmental injustice); and the gendered view that it is nature as women and nature of women to be exploited and subdued (ecofeminism). In the third wave, ethnic and national literatures are considered in view of their particularities and broadening beyond their geopolitical boundaries to attain global spectrum as they explore the environmental underpinning of every facets of man’s endeavour. This paper posits that since the essence of the changing phases is to avert the apocalyptic direction of the world, scholars are to engage their literary sensitivity to locate their efforts appropriately in any of the waves of the field to engender sustained mutual constitutiveness of man and nature.
Keywords: Ecocriticism, Ecofeminism, Environmental Justice, Nature, Waves
Dis/Harmony Between Nature and Culture in Herbert De Lisser’s Jane’s Career (Published)
This article explores the broad ecocritical perspectives represented in De lisser’s Jane’s Career (1914). The study is located in the environmental and cultural histories of the Caribbean. It evocates the interrelationships between nature and culture based on the broader view of the concept of ‘environment’ by the second wave ecocritics to make the theory applicable to urban setting. It enables ecocriticism to place human culture in relation to the urban natural world as it goes beyond the nature-culture divide to the ways man and nature are harmoniously constitutive in an environment (built and unbuilt). This is, the environmental thoughts and actions of the characters are interpreted in relation to the exploitation of nature and women, and also, the harmonious coexistence of man with nature. It is discovered through the examination of the nature-culture interrelationship that environmentality is a feature of urban settlement. The analysis done using that tens touches issues of colonialism, environmental, ecofeminism and identity formation in the Caribbean
Keywords: Ecocriticism, Ecofeminism, Environment, Nature