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Terms for Interpreting Nature Writing

by David Barnhill last modified Dec 01, 2011 10:29 AM

The terms listed below help in understanding the richness and complexity of nature writing.

See the glossary for definitions of these terms

History
Transcendental dualism (different from Transcendentalism)
Enlightenment, humanism, and mechanism
Puritanism
Romanticism
Transcendentalism (different from Transcendental Dualism)
Ideology of progress
The new environmentalism of the 1960s

Analytical Terms
“Nature,” “wild,” and “wilderness”
Ecosocial
Anthropocentrism versus biocentrism/ecocentrism
Intrinsic/inherent value versus instrumental value
Preservation versus conservation
Bioregionalism
Sense of place
Deep ecology
Anarchism and social ecology
Ecotage
Ecofeminism
Patriarchy
Otherness
Literature of engagement

Ten elements of nature writing
>> for a fuller outline, click here
1. Accounts of nature 
2. Accounts of personal experience in nature.
3. The social experience of nature
4. Philosophy of nature
5. Ecological psychology
6. Language and knowledge
7. Philosophy of the human
8. Ecosocial politics.
9. Praxis and politics
10. Spirituality.

 Nature as sacred 
Nature as sacred other
Sacred place
Monistic: all nature as sacred

Themes in the spirituality of nature 
Organic interrelatedness
Vastness
Vitalism
Ongoing creation
Mystery

Themes concerning spiritual awareness & the relationship between the nature writer & nature
Focused attention and energy
Receptivity (transparent eye-ball)
Loss of sense of distinction between subject/object
Direct perception
Present only
No meaning
Tension: unity with world & otherness of nature

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by David Barnhill last modified Dec 01, 2011 10:29 AM