Six Centuries of French Écocritique
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Finch-Race, Daniel A./Posthumus, Stephanie (eds.): French Ecocriticism. From the Early Modern Period to the Twenty-First Century, 296 pp., Lang, Berlin u. a. 2017.
Ecocriticism is a fairly recent academic outgrowth of 1960s environmentalism. Stretching it across six centuries as a practice all the way back to the early modern period hence might confuse the contemporary reader. At least if one considers ecocriticism from a disciplinary point of view rather than the field’s subject-matter—a critical concern for the human treatment of the physical, nonhuman environment. From the latter point of view, the volume revisits intriguingly how people throughout Modernity were pre-occupied with their relationship to their natural environment in one way or another, if under different circumstances at various historical moments. Indeed, not even worry about the consequences of human interference with the nonhuman environment can be restricted to the present, as Jeff Persels’ and Karen Quandt’s...