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Hispanic Ecocriticism

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Edited By José Manuel Marrero Henríquez

Hispanic Ecocriticism finds a rich soil in the main topics of environmental concern in the literature of Latin America and Spain, not only as a source for renewing critical analysis and hermeneutics, but also for the benefit of global environmental awareness. In a renewed exchange of transatlantic relationships, Hispanic Ecocriticism intermingles Latin American ecocritical issues of interest — the oil industry; contamination of forests and rivers; urban ecologies; African, Andean, and Amazonian biocultural ecosystems — with those of interest in Spain — animal rights and the ecological footprints of human activity in contemporary narratives of eco-science fiction, in dystopias, and in literature inspired by natural or rural landscapes that conceal ways of life and cultures in peril of extinction.

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Laura Barbas-Rhoden: Gendering EcoHispanisms: Knowledge, Gender, and Place in a Pluricultural Latin America

Gendering EcoHispanisms: Knowledge, Gender,

and Place in a Pluricultural Latin America

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Laura Barbas-Rhoden

Abstract: This chapter builds upon robust research in the fields of gender studies and ecocriticism by exploring intersectional ecocritical studies as one of the most relevant areas for inquiry into Latin American cultural texts.1 Broadly speaking, the study of the myriad ways that gender, environment, power, and knowledge interrelate and mutually co-constitute one another in the pluricultural world of Latin America is a decolonial and depatriarchalizing praxis with profound implications for ecocriticism. In highlighting this kind of ecocritical practice here, I advocate for the broadest possible understanding of gender identities, as well as an expansion of the definition of environment, to refer to territories, places, landscapes, and most generally, the material world in which human communities and individual human beings live their lives. This broadening of definitions serves the purpose of repositioning Western European and Anglo-American ways of thinking about being and knowing in a pluriversal cultural universe, and it insists that gender matters as a category for consideration with regard to all cultural texts (not only those authored by women or labeled as ecofeminist).

Keywords: Gender Studies, Ecocriticism, Latin American Culture, Environment, Materialism

Although to date the most generally recognized field of literary inquiry related to gender and environment has been ecofeminism and, more recently, feminist ecocriticism (Gaard / Estok / Opperman 2013), interpretive questions at the intersection of gender studies and ecocritical studies must be asked of more texts, from and about more places, and in more languages.2 In fact,...

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