Developing ecofeminist corporeality: Writing the body as activist poetics

Organisation Studies

Speaker:Mary Phillips, University of Bristol
Date: Wednesday 12 November 2014
Time: 2pm
Location: Streatham Court B

Further details

Despite overwhelming evidence of climate change and its impacts, Western governments, business and the public appear unable to make the transformative changes needed to live more sustainably. One explanation for this is that we are physically and emotionally distant from the ways in which our activities are impacting on nature. For ecofeminist philosophers, such distancing is part of an alienation from and instrumental use of nature symptomatic of patriarchal logic. The chapter argues that if we can embrace our organic embeddness in nature then perhaps we can overcome our estrangement from nature and thus the body has to be of fundamental importance to ecofeminism. However, ecofeminism has largely stayed away from engaging the body as a means to challenge the ways in which nature, femininity and emotionality are cast and stops short of suggesting how body/nature awareness can be stimulated and translated into action. To further develop ecofeminist thinking, the chapter combines ecofeminist philosophy with the work of Hélène Cixous. This complements and resonates with the ecofeminist project by calling for a revaluation and re-writing of the body which can subvert patriarchal logic.  I therefore draw on poetic writing in and of the body as a resource for activism that can help overcome our current inertia.