English R1A

Reading & Composition: From Nature Writing to Ecopoetics

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
5 Spring 2014 Emerson, Maude
TTh 11-12:30 222 Wheeler

Book List

Dillard, Annie: Pilgrim at Tinker Creek; Mullen, Haryette: Urban Tumbleweed: Notes from a Tanka Diary; Thoreau, Henry David: Walden and Civil Disobedience

Other Readings and Media

A course reader.


This course is an introduction to American environmental literature of the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries. Our focus will be on the modes of attention and composition that innovative writers have developed in response to the challenge of writing about the world around them. How do writers write about nature, especially when the definition of "nature" is constantly shifting under their feet? The reading list includes works of quiet contemplation, as well as ones that respond to a sense of environmental crisis. It includes works that explore urban environments and ones that force us to ask how experiments in environmental writing relate to experiments in environmental living. Most importantly, these texts will provide you with opportunities to develop your skills as a reader and critical thinker. You will develop your writing skills in series of short analytical essays, in addition to other written exercises in observation, description, and reflection.

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