Professor: Elizabeth Ammons
Institution: Tufts University
Course Number: ENG/ENV/PJS 160

Course Description
Who is most hurt by environmental degradation and abuse and who benefits? In this course we’ll examine what contemporary world literature has to say about environmental racism, ecofeminism, and toxic colonialism. We’ll also think about the social construction of nature, globalization, food justice, and urban ecological issues. We will ask: What is the role of art in the struggle for social change?

Reading includes authors from diverse racial and national locations—Iraq, South Africa, multicultural U.S., India, Malawi, Nigeria, China, Canada, Guatemala. Our study will focus on the intersection of environmental issues and various systems of social injustice, especially racism, sexism, and economic inequity. Primary texts include films, essays, poems, and the following novels and stories: Helena María Viramontes, Under the Feet of Jesus; Hassan Blasim, The Corpse Exhibition and Other Stories of Iraq; Mo Yan, “Iron Child”; Rigoberta Menchú, “Death of Her Little Brother in the Finca”; Margaret Atwood, Oryx and Crake; and Bessie Head, When Rain Clouds Gather.

Full syllabus (PDF): ASLE_Syllabi_EnvJusticeLitAmmons