In the last 20 years, ecocriticism has developed from its early incarnation as the relatively under-theorised preserve of nature writing enthusiasts to its current vibrant state as a sophisticated array of ‘earth-centred’ approaches to cultural criticism that mobilise and reframe theories drawn from a range of disciplines including ecology, philosophy, sociology and biology. Ecocriticism’s diversity also extends to engaging with a variety of literary forms as well as, increasingly, film, TV, digital environments and music, and to an interest in representations of the urban. At its heart is the conviction both that we are living in a time of ecological crisis that requires us to reassess with some urgency our modes of being in the world and that our cultural perceptions of ‘nature’ and the ‘human’, and the relationship between the two, have to a large degree been responsible for these damaging modes of being. Its role is to interrogate and critique these perceptions, even within environmentalism itself, with some ecocritics also committed to exploring alternative ways of conceptualising our relationship with the non-human world.
Marland, Pippa. “Ecocriticism.” Literary Compass Vol 10 Issue 11, Nov. 2013.