Ecological Imaginations in Latin American Fiction

Laura Barbas-Rhoden

Details: 208 pages    6x9
Cloth: $74.95   ISBN 13: 978-0-8130-3546-8   
Paper: $19.95   ISBN 13: 978-0-8130-4415-6   
Pubdate: 3/27/2011
Review(s): 6 available

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"A welcome and needed contribution to the global dialogues dedicated to the environment. It also highlights the importance authors of fiction play in denouncing abuses and practices within countries in which critiques of government policies can lead to persecution and ostracism."--Mary Ann Gosser Esquilín, Florida Atlantic University

From the rainforests of Costa Rica and the Amazon to the windswept lands of Tierra del Fuego, Laura Barbas-Rhoden discusses the natural settings within contemporary Latin American novels as they depict key moments of environmental change or crisis in the region from the nineteenth-century imperialism to the present.

By integrating the use of futuristic novels, Barbas-Rhoden pushes the ecocriticism discussion beyond the realm of "nature writing." She avoids the clichés of literary nature and reminds readers that today’s urban centers are also part of Latin America and its environmental crisis.

One of the first writers to apply ecocriticism to Latin American fiction, Barbas-Rhoden argues that literature can offer readers a deeper understanding of the natural world and humanity’s place in it. She demonstrates that ecocritical readings of Latin American topics must take into account social, racial, and gender injustices. She also addresses postapocalyptic science fiction that speaks to a fear of environmental collapse and reminds North American readers that the environments of Latin America are rich and diverse, encompassing both rural and urban extremes.

Laura Barbas-Rhoden is associate professor of foreign languages at Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

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