Skip to comments.Greening Dickens @ MLA
Posted on 02/03/2014 9:59:31 AM PST by Academiadotorg
Apparently Rachel Carson no longer provides enough inspiration to environmentalists. They are now going back to find environmental messages written long before the first Earth Day was commemorated.
In Charles Dickens novels, Cities are ugly and dangerous and the country is pastoral and idyllic, Troy Boone of the University of Pittsburgh pointed out in a panel on Dickens and the Environment at the Modern Language Associations (MLA) annual meeting in Chicago this year. Dickens himself asks us to think of him as a social novelist, Boone noted.
Sophie Christman-Lavin of the State University of New York at Stony Brook offered an ecofeminist reading of Hard Times. The problem Christman-Lavin faced, that she did not admit to, is that there are scant ecological or feminist references in Dickens novel.
Perhaps this is why she spent most of her time quoting Rob Nixon and James Hansen, the worlds pre-eminent climate scientist. I swear, every time Hansens name was uttered at the MLA (and I counted three such references in as many panels), the mention was followed by a moment of silence.
Nixon is the Rachel Carson & Elizabeth Ritzmann Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin at Madison and a global warming alarmist. Last year, The New York Times reported that Hansen, the climate scientist who issued the clearest warning of the 20th century about the dangers of global warming, will retire from NASA this week, giving himself more freedom to pursue political and legal efforts to limit greenhouse gases.
They both need to hurry and catch up with the latest science on global warming. In a joint press conference NOAA [the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration] and NASA have just released data for the global surface temperature for 2013, David Whitehouse of the The Global Warming Policy Foundation stated on January 21, 2014. In summary they both show that the pause in global surface temperature that began in 1997, according to some estimates, continues. Statistically speaking there has been no trend in global temperatures over this period. Given that the IPCC estimates that the average decadal increase in global surface temperature is 0.2 deg C, the world is now 0.3 deg C cooler than it should have been.
Sorry, but we will be reading Dickins long after the academic weak-d*cks at the MLA assume room temp and their septic remains pollute the land.
They should keep to literature they know...like “My t*rd has two daddies.”
The predictions made during the first earth day conclave are hilarious.
The cities WERE ugly, dangerous, and full of corruption when he was writing. Unfortunately, the cities are still dangerous, full of corruption, and largely ugly, especially in the US. The founding fathers wanted the US to avoid developing big cities of that ilk, but......
What people who read Dickens’ descriptions of early Victorian city life should consider is that as terrible as those conditions were, people still chose to move to those cities. What does that say about the conditions of rural poverty they were moving away from?
Well, I think the enclosure acts drove people into the cities. There was certainly poverty but also allotments where people could grow healthy food.
Since I sold my company and retired I have been able to stay away from the big cities, especially DC. Yesterday my daughter and I went into DC to the Verizon Center to catch a hockey game and though the game was fun to attend I absolutely hated being in downtown DC. The dirt, the smells, and the crush of people were totally against my likings.
Writing that, I wonder if anybody who thinks rural life is pastoral and idyllic have ever had to work on a farm. Working on my uncle's dairy farm was tough and we usually worked about 14 hours each day.
Only the affluent emigres from the suburbs or cities who float above it all.