Thoreau's Sense of Place

Thoreau's Sense of Place

Essays in American Environmental Writing
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“ … a challenging and insightful collection of essays. Each contribution enlarges the reader's understanding of Thoreau and the "green" movement in US writing. ” — P.J. Ferlazzo, Choice Magazine

“Schneider's collection of 19 essays on Thoreau's environmental writing enhances the argument, set forth by Buell, that Thoreau articulated the various and occasionally contradictory ways Americans would think about the natural world …This is a challenging and insightful set of essays.”—PJ. Ferlazzo, Choice Magazine

“This unique, socholarly collection of essays painstakingly examines the writing of Thoreau, comparing him with other environmental writers and stressing literary scholarship within environmental studies … (a) lofty collection.”—Joyce Sparrow, Library Journal

“This is a book at once diverse and thoughtfully coordinated from which, to my pleasure and humility, I've learned much about things I supposed I had already understood.”—from the foreword by Lawrence Buell

Recent Thoreau studies have shifted to an emphasis on the green" Thoreau, on Thoreau the environmentalist, rooted firmly in particular places and interacting with particular objects. In the wake of Buell's Environmental Imagination, the nineteen essayists in this challenging volume address the central questions in Thoreau studies today: how “green,” how immersed in a sense of place, was Thoreau really, and how has this sense of place affected the tradition of nature writing in America?

The contributors to this stimulating collection address the ways in which Thoreau and his successors attempt to cope with the basic epistemological split between perceiver and place inherent in writing about nature; related discussions involve the kinds of discourse most effective for writing about place. They focus on the impact on Thoreau and his successors of culturally constructed assumptions deriving from science, politics, race, gender, history, and literary conventions. Finally, they explore the implications surrounding a writer's appropriation or even exploitation of places and objects.


Laura Dassow Walls
William Rossi
Richard J. Schneider
Ted Olson
James A. Papa, Jr.
David M. Robinson
Isaiah Smithson
Peter Blakemore
J. Scott Bryson
James G. Mcgrath
Bernard W. Quetchenbach
Rochelle Johnson
Greg Garrard
Aimin Cheng
Nancy Craig Simmons
Robert Sattelmeyer
Stephen Germic
Barbara “Barney” Nelson
Susan M. Lucas