1st Edition

Environmental Humanities in Folktales Theory and Practice

By P. Mary Vidya Porselvi Copyright 2023
    104 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge India

    104 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge India

    This work throws light on the areas of space and time, nature and culture, spirit and matter in the folktales that nurture systemic thinking. It identifies and explores motifs and patterns in select folktales that promote interconnectedness, interdependence, holism, synthesis, and circular pattern of life and examines the ecological relevance of folktales in fostering a systematic view of life.

    The volume discusses why it is important to critically analyze alternative worldviews in order to find holistic solutions to contemporary global ecological issues. It sheds light upon Ecofemiotics as a discipline, a portmanteau of Ecofeminist Semiotics, and through a re-reading of folktales, it puts forward an innovative folktale typology which connects women with environment. The book discusses an ecofemiotics cyclical praxis at three levels,

    • Promoting theory to practice through the analysis of folktales as Gaia Care Narratives using the Ecofemiotic framework.

    • Enabling practice to theory, through a classroom experiment, observation, and inference.

    • Envisioning theory to practice, through the identification of Gaia Care Principles and its multidisciplinary hands-on scope and function to create avenues towards ecological balance and sustainable living.

    Inspired by the hearts that tell stories of love, care, nurture, and the Earth, this nuanced work will be of interest to students and researchers of literature and literary theory, sociology, social anthropology, gender studies and women’s studies, feminism, development studies, environment, and folklore studies.

    Foreword by Scott Slovic. Introduction: Heart, Hearth, and Earth. 1. Akam as an Ecological Philosophy 2. Mindscape, Storyscape, and Signscape 3. Folktales as Gaia Care Narratives 4. Storytelling as Eco-Pedagogy 5. Multiverse in a Grain


    P. Mary Vidya Porselvi is Assistant Professor of English, Loyola College, Chennai, India. She obtained her BA, MA and PhD degrees from Stella Maris College. Her primary research was on the topic ‘Mother Earth Discourse as Conscientizacao: An Ecofeminist Approach to Folktales from India’ and she has identified an innovative folktale typology which connects women with environment. She has been a recipient of the Fulbright (FNAPE) Award for the year 2019-2020, and she worked on the topic ‘Indian Classical Ecocriticism: An Ecofeminist-Semiotic Study’. She has authored books titled ‘Bhoomi Tales’ (2015) ‘Nature’s Voices Women’s Voices’ (2015) ‘Nature, Culture and Gender: Rereading the Folktale’ with Routledge and Taylor and Francis (2016) and ‘Sylvan Tones: English through Folklore’ (2017).