Poetry and the Anthropocene : Ecology, biology and technology in contemporary British and Irish poetry
Poetry and the Anthropocene draws on the work of a series of poets from across the political and poetic spectrum, analysing how understandings of technology shape literature about place, evolution and the tradition of writing about what still gets called Nature. The book explores how writers' understanding of sciences such as climatology or biochemistry might shape their poetry's form, and how literature can respond to environmental crises without descending into agitprop, self-righteousness or apocalyptic cynicism. In the face of the Anthropocene's radical challenges to ethics, aesthetics and politics, the book shows how poetry offers significant ways of interrogating and rendering the complex relationships between organisms and their environments in a world increasingly marked by technology.
- Paperback | 224 pages
- 159 x 235 x 19.05mm | 408g
- 27 Apr 2018
- Taylor & Francis Ltd
- London, United Kingdom
- 1 Halftones, black and white; 1 Illustrations, black and white
Other books in this series
04 Jun 2015
03 Mar 2014
05 May 2016
27 Apr 2018
07 Mar 2019
14 Dec 2018
08 Jan 2019
Table of contents
1. Evolving systems of (eco)poetry
2. 'Life subdued to its instrument': Hughes, mutation and technology
3. 'Germinal ironies': changing climates in the poetry of Derek Mahon
4. The resistant materials of Jeremy Prynne
Conclusion: Evolution, agency and feedback at the end of a world
Hugh Haughton - University of York.
Sam Solnick has written an indispensable account of the concept of ecopoetry, its meanings, history, and vicissitudes, giving the term a sharp and valuable focus. Better than that, he has instantiated its force in informed, engaged close readings
Timothy Clark - Durham University
As Solnick says, we are living in an age when humanity has 'the capacity to disrupt (but not control) biological and ecological process'. This thoughtful and timely book addresses what it means to read and write poetry in this context
Robert Hampson FEA, FRSA
Professor of Modern Literature, Royal Holloway, University of London
As ecocriticism itself expands and contracts, drawing on but sometimes recoiling from other bodies of knowledge, it is increasingly difficult to map its theoretical twists and turns, or to map any one of its positions onto an effective praxis. The strength of Solnick's book lies in his ability to negotiate this sometimes self-contradictory field to offer careful and perceptive readings
British Society for Literature and Science
A wide-ranging, richly suggestive set of insights. Not only does Poetry and the Anthropocene offer a meticulous engagement with existing criticism in every chapter from the literature review onwards, but it also brings the same level of attention to bear on its primary materials, offering intelligent close readings of the poetry itself as well as thoughtfully curated selections from the archives. Overall, Solnick's conclusions underline how thoughtful, wide ranging and occasionally provocative his work is.
Green Letters: Studies in Ecocriticism
Poetry and the Anthropocene as a whole is a dense study, often working beyond the confines of what we might conventionally call the Humanities to probe poetic responses to climate change. Solnick's book is part of growing and important body of work that seeks to bring critical and theoretical insights to the study of ecologically-minded texts, and even to consider how apparently non-ecologically minded texts are enveloped by environmental concerns.
The Years Work in Critical and Cultural Theory
"What Solnick achieves in this really quite remarkable study of contemporary poetry and its various eco- contexts is a sustained and illuminating analysis of how poets understand the complex relationship between organisms and their environment, in an age when human activity is modifying the very constitution of the Earth."
The Cambridge Quarterly, 2017
"The wonderful flourish of Poetry and the Anthropocene is that the book itself benefits from such slow re-readings, as generative connections blossom backwards and forwards through the chapters. It is a pleasure to 'think through', as it were'... Solnick's close textual analysis is a joyously detailed and well-researched reclamation of Hughes from earlier critics that demonstrates an anthropogenic depth to the poetry."
Samuel J. Cooper, C21 Litrature Journal
About Sam Solnick