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Humanities 2018, 7(2), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/h7020059

An Eco-Critical Analysis of Climate Change and the Unthinkable in Amitav Ghosh’s Fiction and Non-Fiction

Department of English, Université Paris 2—Panthéon Assas, 75006 Paris, France
Received: 26 April 2018 / Revised: 5 June 2018 / Accepted: 5 June 2018 / Published: 7 June 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Literature and Environment—The Cradle of Ecocriticism)
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Abstract

In his work of non-fiction The Great Derangement (2016), Amitav Ghosh examines the inability of the present generation to grasp the scale of climate change in the spheres of Literature, History and Politics. The central premise in this work of non-fiction is based on the statement that literature will one day be accused of its complicity with the great derangement and of blind acceptance of the climate crisis. This paper will study how Ghosh’s fictional and non-fictional enterprise voices a call for more imaginative and cultural forms of fiction that articulate resistance against materialism that can destroy our planet. We shall see how Ghosh’s fictional enterprise falls within the sphere of postcolonial eco-criticism that considers the phenomenon of “material eco-criticism”. I shall also reveal Ghosh’s environmental advocacy in his works of fiction, The Ibis Trilogy and The Hungry Tide. This paper will analyze how the Ibis Trilogy is not just an exploration of the particularly heinous operation of imperial power leading up to the Opium Wars but is also an eco-critical narrative that articulates resistance against the violence of climate change. A study of The Hungry Tide will also reveal how this hybrid literary text is both a historical account of the Marichjhapi massacre and a plea to preserve the eco-system of our time. I shall thus consider the challenges that climate change poses for the postcolonial writer and the evolving grid of literary forms that shape the narrative imagination. View Full-Text
Keywords: advocacy; biodiversity; eco-criticism; ecology; eco-materialism; eco-narrative; postcolonialism; sustainability advocacy; biodiversity; eco-criticism; ecology; eco-materialism; eco-narrative; postcolonialism; sustainability
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Vincent, S. An Eco-Critical Analysis of Climate Change and the Unthinkable in Amitav Ghosh’s Fiction and Non-Fiction. Humanities 2018, 7, 59.

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