Member News

In Memoriam: John Felstiner

John Felstiner, Stanford Professor and poetry scholar, dies at age 80

It is with great sadness that we share the news that longtime ASLE member Louis John Felstiner, Jr., died on February 24, 2017 at the age of eighty. Professor Felstiner was a translator, literary critic, teacher, poet, and ardent environmentalist. He is survived by Mary Lowenthal Felstiner, his wife of over fifty years, their two children, Sarah and Alek, and two grandchildren, Brayden and Asa.

Professor Felstiner was born in Mount Vernon, New York, ...

New Publications by Michael Potts

Michael Potts has recently published an article in Tolkien Studies that looks at the influence of Oswald Spengler’s Decline of the West on Tolkien’s famous Lord of the Rings. Spengler formulated a complex and immensely influential argument that civilisation was cyclical – it grew in a particular environment or soil, bloomed and then declined and withered as the ideals that sustained it exhausted themselves and decay and decline set in. Tolkien fans will obviously recognise the applicability of this to the world of Middle ...

In Memoriam: Kota Inoue

Kota Inoue was a member of ASLE.  Many participants in the Moscow conference will remember Kota, who was a friendly volunteer with the site host team. He greeted many of the conference attendees at the registration table, in multiple languages, and was a smiling and friendly face throughout the event. He will be greatly missed.

This memoriam for Kota was written by his mentor and dissertation advisor James Fujii, and is posted here with his permission:

It is with great sadness that I announce the ...

Taiwan Symposium on S-F/Sci-fi and Planetary Healing

A Symposium on S-F/Sci-fi and Planetary Healing at Tamkang University in Tamsui, Taiwan (November 12, 2016)

Entitled “Writing S-F and Giving Voice to Planetary Healing,” this one-day symposium was held on Saturday, November 12, 2016 at Tamkang University in Tamsui, Taiwan. It is our belief that, while the generic focus of Sci-fi is mainly on the hypothetical and the apocalyptic fate of the humans, our approach to S-F should not be limited to Sci-fi exclusively; we need to encompass speculative fiction in its most inclusive ...

John Burroughs Medal Awarded to Sharman Apt Russell

The John Burroughs Association selected Sharman Apt Russell for her book Diary of a Citizen Scientist: Chasing Tiger Beetles and Other New Ways of Engaging the World, published by Oregon State University Press.

In the exploding world of citizen science, hundreds of thousands of volunteers are monitoring climate change, tracking bird migration, finding stardust for NASA, and excavating mastodons. The sheer number of citizen scientists, combined with new technology, has begun to shape how research is conducted. Non-professionals become acknowledged experts: dentists turn into astronomers and ...

Words for the Earth Award Established at CSU

Longtime ASLE members John Calderazzo and SueEllen Campbell are retiring from Colorado State University, and CSU is establishing a Words for the Earth Award in their honor.

This award will support efforts by faculty, graduate and undergraduate students, and staff whose work addresses the pressing need to illuminate and protect the natural world and employs the skills and insights of literature and expression.

If you would like to contribute, give online at, or mail a check payable to the Colorado State University Foundation (write ...

Cameron Conaway in Newsweek, Wins Journalism Fellowship

ASLE Member Cameron Conaway has written an article on pollution in India’s Ganges River that is published in Newsweek.  The piece was submitted for an American Society of Magazine Editor‘s award, for its ability to read like a novel but be packed with research. The story came to be thanks to a grant from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.

Read the article

Conaway was also recently awarded a Daniel Pearl Investigative Journalism Fellowship from Moment Magazine.  He will be covering the genocidal conditions faced ...

The Pond in the Park: An Indic Tale on Southeast Asian Spiritualisms and Ecology

ASLE member Uma Jayaraman has made a video of a performance that she also gave at the 2015 ASLE Conference as part of the panel entitled “Resistances and Emergences.” “The Pond in the Park” is set in present day Singapore, and focuses on human estrangement from Nature. This eco-spiritual tale is narrated in the amalgamated styles of Dastaan and Kathakaalakshebam, two ancient forms of popular storytelling in South Asian cultures. Jayaraman is a creative writer and artist, who has scripted and directed six ...

Universities Make ‘Cli-fi’ Dreams Come True

Click to peruse this Huffington Post piece about the rise in cli-fi literature and environmental humanities courses being taught at the University of Oregon, UC Santa Barbara, and elsewhere. Original article reprinted below.

Universities are getting tough on environmental protection as they tackle challenges, through architecture, literature, hard science, and finance, bringing the new genre of climate-change fiction to life.

Students and professors worldwide are pushing the frontier of climate change research farther than ever this summer exhibiting their solar habitats at the Solar Decathalon, ...

IPCC climate change report

Click to listen to Stephanie LeMenager, professor of English at the University of Oregon, who was interviewed on the CBC radio program The Current with Anna Maria Tremonti about the role of the arts and humanities in climate change response. Podcast and summary summary reposted below.

Find out how “The Day After Tomorrow” and other apocalyptic fiction can help with the hard reality of climate change in Checking-In today. And when we aired some of Dennis Saddleman’s gripping poem “Monster” the reaction was overwhelming, ...