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Introduction to Environmental Literature 

This course explores the basic question: what is environmental literature? Together with the students, we answer this question by examining the representation of environment and environmental issues in a selection of literary texts within diverse international contexts. Students are given an introduction to various theories, approaches and trends used to understand and analyze how different writers across the globe represent their environments and environmental issues historically, provisionally and anticipatively. We will consider how those approaches and trends impact our understandings of, and reactions to environmental issues and the non-human world. The course examines diverse texts including short stories, novels, poems, and science fiction. The chosen texts are from all corners of the globe, and are written in any number of languages. To be more specific, we use literary analysis to decipher the form and content of the course texts to identify how and why poets, dramatists, and fiction writers have addressed environmental questions. By comparing and contrasting different literary texts and their different representations of environment and environmental issues, we identify shared concerns and images indicative of environmental literature in general. Finally, the students use their close critical readings of selected texts to produce analytical writing investigating the extent to which literary texts engage the nature and the environment. Moreover, as environmental studies are based in ecocriticism and green studies, this course approaches environment as a part of writers’ literary imagination as well as a part of the realities and actual environmental challenges in different modern and contemporary societies. Thus, through critical readings, discussion, and analysis of selected texts and their environmental content and concerns including pollution, risk, environmental destruction, wars, etc., we engage in the study of cultural beliefs and political systems of different societies, periods and backgrounds.

Exam info and full course description

Exam info and full course description can be found in the course catalogue.  

Admission Requirements

Course specific:

To apply for the course you must either be enrolled in a bachelor's degree, have a bachelor's degree or have passed a qualifying entry examination.    


Exchange students: nomination from your home university

Freemovers: documentation for English Language proficiency

You can read more about admission here.