A Comparative Diachronic Study of Eco-poetry from America and India: Changing Perceptions and Ethical Concerns

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Somparna Bose
Dipayan Dutta


In the beginning, nature poetry meditated on the encounter between the human and non-human world and revealed the different meaning of life, where ecological poetry questions form (both poetic and the traditional form) of the poetic persona as a single, coherent self as well as bringing imagination of biocentric perspective and ecological interrelatedness. Ecopoetry now is no longer an only subset of nature poetry that is related to certain conventions of romanticism. 

 Whitman’s imagination was “the global village,” a world brought closer and to some degree homogenized by rapid transport and communication, and “Passage to India” is a hymn for the global tribe, celebrating the grand connections – the opening of the Suez Canal, the building of the transcontinental railroad, and the laying of telegraph cables across the oceans. Exploring this interdisciplinary subject, Forest Gander creates, with the help of three acclaimed photographers and ethical concern helps readers in the imagination of an empathetic relation in which the world itself is fundamental. On contrary to acknowledging the local ecology he is a poet who talks about the globe, China,  

 Besides these poets from America, this paper studies two Indian authors: ancient poet Kalidasa and Malayalam ecopoet Sugatha Kumari. Kalidasa was an ancient Indian poet who empathically drew human-nature relations. Kalidasa’s use of season to portray human emotions and how animal instincts are a part of human behaviour by referring to the sun, moon other elements and animate and inanimate objects was ahead of his time. Sugatha Kumari studies the reactivity between ecology and human society and the reflection of the dominant development on the longevity of the preserved environment. 

 This comparative study of ecopoetry of American and Indian authors on the evolution will help identify and distinguish Indian ecocentric literature from the western ecocentric canon through the different phases of the journey of ecocentric poetry in India and the West. 

Published: Nov 14, 2022

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Literature facing the challenges of the Anthropocene