Peter Barry
Search for other papers by Peter Barry in
Current site
Google Scholar
Abstract only
Log-in for full text

Ecocriticism as a concept first arose in the late 1970s, at meetings of the Western Literature Association. Ecocriticism takes its literary bearings from three major nineteenth-century American writers, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Margaret Fuller, and Henry David Thoreau. This chapter indicates the scope of some of the debates within ecocriticism concerning the crucial matter of the relationship between culture and nature. Perhaps the most fundamental point to make is that ecocritics reject the notion that everything is socially and/or linguistically constructed. A related issue, which is also thrown into relief by ecocriticism, is whether a distinction is deconstructed into self-contradiction by the fact that it is not always absolute and clear-cut. A STOP and THINK section provides the reader with some ‘hands-on’ experience with the subject discussed. The chapter describes some activities of ecocritics and presents Thomas Hardy's poem 'In Time of The Breaking of Nations' as an example of ecocriticism.

  • Collapse
  • Expand

All of MUP's digital content including Open Access books and journals is now available on manchesterhive.


Beginning theory (fourth edition)

An introduction to literary and cultural theory


All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 7451 2766 234
Full Text Views 65 27 2
PDF Downloads 88 31 4