Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Department of English: English Studies
Roberta Seelinger Trites
Mary J Moran
In this project, I will begin to develop a reimagined ecofeminist lens that is informed by a careful attention to the relationship between discourse and embodiment. The field of children’s literature would benefit from additional guidance on how to think complexly about ecofeminist tenants in young adult literature. While the novels I’ve chosen to analyze in this project certainly contain ecofeminist themes such as care, reciprocity, discussion of embodiment, depictions of nature and the relationships between humans and the environment, this project’s scope is not to create a definition for what constitutes an ecofeminist young adult text. Rather, I intend to provide a way of looking at YA literature with an attention to the ways that discourse and embodiment work collectively and individually. In doing so, I hope to prove first that children’s literature is in need of defining tenets of a reimagined ecofeminist critical lens; second, that a reimagined ecofeminist way of analyzing texts gives us a more nuanced way of understanding the intersectional nature of oppression; and third, that such a lens gives us a valuable tool to analyze and rethink the radical nature of care and its complex relationship with embodiment and discourse. When applied to literature, such a reimagined ecofeminist lens allows us to connect a protagonist’s growing awareness of their body to a recognition of their place-situatedness, which allows them to develop a growing care for those around them that have been othered. My hope is that such an exploration of the relationship between discourse and embodiment will reveal how each work collectively and individually against neoliberal notions of the self, against patriarchal structures, and against all structures of oppression and systems that other in ecofeminist young adult literature (including racism, classism, ableism, and sizeism, environmental degradation, etc.).
Krapivkin, Laurel, "Ecofeminism Reimagined: Discourse & Embodiment in Young Adult Literature" (2023). Theses and Dissertations. 1855.