Women and Nature?
Beyond Dualism in Gender, Body, and Environment
Women and Nature? Beyond Dualism in Gender, Body, and Environment provides a historical context for understanding the contested relationships between women and nature, and it articulates strategies for moving beyond the dualistic theories and practices that often frame those relationships.
In 1974, Françoise d’Eaubonne coined the term "ecofeminism" to raise awareness about interconnections between women’s oppression and nature’s domination in an attempt to liberate women and nature from subordination. Since then, ecofeminism has attracted scholars and activists from various disciplines and positions to assess the relationship between the cultural human and the natural non-human through gender reconsiderations. The contributors to this volume present critical and constructive perspectives on ecofeminism throughout its history, from the beginnings of ecofeminism in the 1970s through to contemporary and emerging developments in the field, drawing on animal studies, postcolonialism, film studies, transgender studies, and political ecology.
This interdisciplinary and international collection of essays demonstrates the ongoing relevance of ecofeminism as a way of understanding and responding to the complex interactions between genders, bodies, and the natural environment. It will be of great interest to students and scholars of ecofeminism as well as those involved in environmental studies and gender studies more broadly.
Table of Contents
Notes on Contributors
Part I: Overview
Karen Ya-Chu Yang
1. Françoise d’Eaubonne and Ecofeminism: Rediscovering the Link between Women and Nature
Part II: Rethinking Animality
2. A Retreat on the "River Bank": Perpetuating Patriarchal Myths in Animal Stories
3. Visual Patriarchy: PETA Advertising and the Commodification of Sexualized Bodies
4. Ethical Transfeminism: Transgender Individuals’ Narratives as Contributions to Ethics of Vegetarian Ecofeminisms
Part III: Constructing Connections
5. The Women-Nature Connection as a Key Element in the Social Construction of Western Contemporary Motherhood
6. The Relationship of Women’s Body Image and Experience in Nature
Denise Mitten and Chiara D’Amore
7. Writing Women into Back-to-the-Land: Feminism, Appropriation, and Identity in the 1970s Feminist Magazine Country Women
Valerie Padilla Carroll
Part IV: Mediating Practices
8. Bilha Givon as Sartre’s "Third Party" in Environmental Dialogues
9. "Yo soy mujer" ¿yo soy ecologista? Feminist and Ecological Consciousness at the Women’s Intercultural Center
10. The Politics of Land, Water, and Toxins: Reading the Life-narratives of Three Women Oikos-carers from Kerala
R. Sreejith Varma and Swarnalatha Rangarajan
11. Ecofeminism and the Telegenics of Celebrity in Documentary Film: The Case of Aradhana Seth’s Dam/Age (2003) and the Narmada Bachao Andolan
Izabel F. O. Brandão
Douglas A. Vakoch is President of METI International, a nonprofit research and educational organization devoted to Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence (METI) and supporting the sustainability of human culture on multigenerational timescales, which is essential for long-term METI research.
Sam Mickey is Adjunct Professor in the Theology and Religious Studies Department at the University of San Francisco, U.S.
"This innovative and engaging anthology on women and nature reveals the ongoing relevance of ecofeminism in today’s global world by emphasizing postcolonialism, ecocriticism, queer ecology, animality, and feminist materialism. Anyone interested in the nuances and complexities of the women-nature connection across histories, belief-systems, and regions will want to buy this book." — Carolyn Merchant of the University of California at Berkeley has written on the connections between ecofeminism and feminist theory and is the author of Earthcare: Women and the Environment, among other books.
"The myriad ways that Earthly bodies – both human and nonhuman – continue to be bound by structures of patriarchy and domination requires sustained analysis. This transnational, transdisciplinary volume brings the lens of ecofeminism to bear on timely topics, including transgender studies, animal studies, and the new materialism." — Elizabeth Allison is the Program Chair of Ecology, Spirituality, and Religion at the California Institute of Integral Studies.
"This fresh and exciting collection identifies privileges and invisibilities overlooked in earlier ecofeminist thinking. Authors call for ethical self-reflexivity and deep questioning of heteronormative assumptions reflecting a wide range of interdisciplinary, postcolonial, and cross-cultural perspectives. From ecosickness narratives to borderlands ecofeminism, this set of papers provides a rich and timely offering by deeply thoughtful scholars across the globe." — Stephanie Kaza, Professor Emerita, University of Vermont
"Woman and Nature: Beyond Dualism in Gender, Body and Environment provides an innovative and captivating perspective on the continued relevance of ecofeminism, especially given today’s ecological crisis. Contributing to the evolution of ecofeminism and highlighting the movement towards interdisciplinary engagement via the inclusion of contemporary theoretical methods such as transgender studies, animal studies, new materialism, postcolonial studies, and ecocriticism this book is an absolute must for students and scholars across disciplines with particular relevance to those in the environmental humanities, environmental and sustainability studies, philosophy, theology, religious studies, and international relations." - Sarah O'Brien, Drew Theological School