Tag Archives: Environmentalism

Tolstoy and Climate Change Denial

The denial of the citizens of Moscow as Napoleon approaches the city, described by Tolstoy in “War in Peace,” resembles climate change denialism.

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The Animals Are Trying to Warn Us

Scott Bates invokes “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” in this Nativity poem.

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Love Nature, Love Humans

Biologist-poet David Haskell taught my students to see the world with playful eyes.

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Everyperson’s Environmental E-Car

Scott Bates, cheerleading for solar power and electric cars.

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An Environmentalist’s Revenge Fantasy

Scott Bates proves an environmentalist’s revenge fantasy against those violating the earth.

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Fixing the House that Jefferson Built

I offer my apologies to my regular readers for having written a series of very long posts this week. To give you some relief, I offer up a political poem by my father, who is a master of light verse. As he did in a poem that I ran in a previous post (you can […]

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This Fragile Earth, Our Island Home

On Monday I talked about how Silko says that, if we are to end our destructive (and ultimately self-destructive) assaults upon the earth, we must come into spiritual alignment with it.  I’m aware that appealing to Native American religions is sure to draw jeers from certain sectors of the political right, especially the Rush Limbaughs […]

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Purity Tests Kill the Patient

This is following up on an idea I inferred yesterday, that our delight in white cherry tree blossoms indicates a deep longing for innocence.  I suggested that we have more of a problem than do the Japanese (or at least certain Japanese connoisseurs) over the fact that this innocence will fade.  Wanting to grab on to innocence […]

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Environmental Revenge Fantasy

Film Friday Henceforth I will devote my Friday posts to something I like almost as much as literature–which is to say, movies.  Film is, after all, a narrative art form, and I teach film history and theory as well as literature at St. Mary’s College of Maryland. Although I may, at times, look at intersections between […]

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Mess with Dionysus and You’ll Pay

Euripides’ The Bacchae was written 2500 years ago.  Given the shape our environment is in, the play is more urgent than ever. The story involves the nature god Dionysus, who visits Thebes followed by a troupe of dancing women, the Maenads or Bacchae.  Dionysus is the product of a union between Zeus and Semele, a […]

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  • Literature is as vital to our lives as food and shelter. Stories and poems help us work through the challenges we face, from everyday irritations to loneliness, heartache, and death. Literature is meant to mix it up with life. This website explores how it does so.

    Please feel free to e-mail me [rrbates (at) smcm (dot) edu]. I would be honored to hear your thoughts and questions about literature.

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