Chapter 7: “Poetry’s a Line of Defence”: Ecopoetry and Politics in the 21st Century

in From Ego to Eco
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The essay discusses the potential of poetry in general and ecopoetry in particular to make a political stance in a world on the brink of environmental catastrophe. Does it make sense to consider the non-instrumental and non-pragmatic characteristics of ecopoetry as an antidote to destructive forms of instrumental reasoning? Can the discourse of (eco)poetry provide a language which bridges the gap between the linguistic sign and the referent out there, between human thought and the materiality of the world? The essay argues that contemporary poems by the Scottish poets Kathleen Jamie and John Burnside fathom the “hidden resources of language” (Timothy Clark) to fundamentally question anthropocentric modes of thought.

From Ego to Eco

Mapping Shifts from Anthropocentrism to Ecocentrism

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