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Postcolonial EcologiesLiteratures of the Environment$
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Elizabeth DeLoughrey and George B. Handley

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780195394429

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780195394429.001.0001

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Toward a Caribbean Ecopoetics

Toward a Caribbean Ecopoetics

Derek Walcott’s Language of Plants

(p.80) 3 Toward a Caribbean Ecopoetics
Postcolonial Ecologies

Elaine Savory

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the notion of postcolonial ecopoetics by offering a reading of Derek Walcott’s poetry. More specifically, it looks at environmental or ecological consciousness that manifests in Walcott’s aesthetic decisions. The chapter first considers Walcott’s use of flora as a reflection of his imagination regarding postcolonial ecology, as well as his representation of the connection between poetry and plants. Focusing on “The Bounty,” it then explores creolized landscapes and Walcott’s inscription of the Caribbean relationship to plants. Finally, it cites the work of English poet John Clare to show how an environmental imagination informs Walcott’s thematic concerns as a poet and influences his aesthetic strategies.

Keywords:   ecopoetics, Derek Walcott, poetry, flora, postcolonial ecology, plants, creolized landscapes, Caribbean, John Clare

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