Preface

Preface

I grew up in a quant, rural village in the woods of Vermont. There was no gang of neighborhood kids riding their bikes through the dirt roads, and there was no playground just down the street, so I had to make my own fun. I used to play pretend as I would come up with strange characters, and act like I was no longer a little girl, but rather, a waitress from a posh restaurant in France, or a secret agent whose mission was to spy on the bad guys (my brothers), or my favorite: Velma, solving a new mystery all on her own, since everyone new she was the real brains of the operation. My imagination was bursting with these tales of adventure and once I learned to write, I made it a goal of mine to jot down every little thing that flitted into my head. Looking back on my childhood, it is no wonder why I became so inclined to devote all four years of my college experience to the craft.

Growing up in a log cabin in the woods of Vermont had an amazing impact on me as it allowed me to form an unbreakable bond with nature and the art of writing, so when I had the opportunity to take my first ever environmental writing course last Spring, I knew that I had to take advantage of it. Within this course we have read the works of renowned environmental writers such as Rachel Carson, TC Boyle, and Terry Tempest Williams. It was a rewarding challenge to compose this series of essays over the last few months, and it has taught me more than I could have imagined. As I have grown older, I have slowly come to the realization that there are very few people fighting against the institutions that contribute to the degradation of our planet and now that we have such a problematic figure in the white house, it has become increasingly more obvious that we have a long way to go until we make any further progress on this very serious issue.

In writing this collection of essays, I have immersed myself in life changing environmental literature. From Gary Snyder’s collection of poetry in Turtle Island to Edward Abbey’s novel The Monkey Wrench Gang about a ragtag group of environmental warriors, I was inspired to look at the natural world in a completely new light because now, I no longer just look at nature as the beautiful setting of my childhood, rather I now look at it as the beautiful setting of my childhood that is in desperate need of help. The essays that follow chronicle my literary journey through the wild as I grapple with the problematic human existence by using memoirs, novels, and collections of essays and poetry from eight different environmental writers. I hope that anyone who comes across these essays will become motivated now more than ever to take action and stand up for the continued and healthy existence of the more than human world.

Table of Contents:

Exploring The Endangered World

The Destructive Human Existence

Identity and Change

Challenging Tradition

Making Connections

 

 

Featured Image Courtesy of: Myself

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