Making Nature Sacred : Literature, Religion, and Environment in America from the Puritans to the Present
In this book, John Gatta argues that the religious import of American environmental literature has yet to be fully recognized or understood. Making Nature Sacred explores how the quest for 'natural revelation' has been pursued through successive phases of American literary and intellectual history. It shows how the imaginative challenge of 'reading' landscapes has been influenced by biblical hermeneutics. Though focused on adaptations of Judeo-Christian religious traditions, it also samples Native American, African American, and Buddhist forms of ecospirituality. It begins with Colonial New England writers such as Anne Bradstreet and Jonathan Edwards, re-examines pivotal figures such as Henry Thoreau and John Muir, and takes account of writings by Mary Austin, Rachel Carson, and many others along the way. The book concludes with an assessment of the "spiritual renaissance" underway in current environmental writing, as represented by five noteworthy poets and by authors such as Wendell Berry, Anne Dillard, Marilynne Robinson, Peter Matthiessen, and Barry Lopez.
- Paperback | 304 pages
- 154.9 x 231.1 x 17.8mm | 430.92g
- 28 Oct 2004
- Oxford University Press Inc
- New York, United States
- numerous halftones and 1 line drawing
...outstanding merits. At times, the scope of the work attains the encyclopedic. The discussion of lesser known authors and poets opens spaces of interest somewhat removed from a purely religious dimension. * Consciousness , Literature and the Arts *
About John Gatta
John Gatta is Professor of English at the University of Connecticut. He is the author of American Madonna: Images of the Divine Woman in Literary Culture (OUP, 1997) and a variety of other publications concerning the interplay between religion and literature.