Oecologies: Inhabiting Premodern Worlds is a research cluster that gathers scholars from the humanities living and working along the North American Pacific coast to investigate the idea of “oecology,” an older spelling of the modern concept “ecology.” We retain this defamiliarizing spelling because our research asks how we might rethink “ecology” through the study of premodern natural history, taxonomy, hierarchy, and categorization. By exploring an array of discourses about “oecology,” our research asks what conceptual or metaphorical resources might help us – as located moderns – reorient our perceptions about the premodern past and our present and future moments. Among other matters, our research will discuss the relations among terms such as N/nature, landscape, ecology, economy, environment, and technology, and will ask how our regionally and temporally specific conceptions draw / differ from premodern inhabitations of the world.
Tiffany Werth (Associate Professor, English, University of California, Davis) teaches the English Reformations, romance in all its forms, and is currently researching early modern habits of taxonomy and all things mineral. Website / Email
Patricia Badir (Professor, English, University of British Columbia) teaches Renaissance literature, and is currently working on playmaking and the perils of mimesis on Shakespeare’s stage. Website / Email
David Coley (Associate Professor, English, Simon Fraser University) teaches Medieval literature, with an emphasis on the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. He is currently working on the Black Death and the shape it assumes in late-medieval English poetry. Website / Email
Deanna Kreisel (Associate Professor, English, University of British Columbia) teaches Victorian literature, ecocriticism, feminist and psychoanalytic theory, and theory of the novel. She is the founder of Vcologies, an international working group of ecocritics working in the British nineteenth century. Website / Email
Scott R. MacKenzie (Associate Professor, English, University of British Columbia) teaches the eighteenth century and Romantic eras. His new project investigates the emergence of the economic law of scarcity in the British Romantic era and its implication in many areas of socio-cultural life, including agriculture, economics, and aesthetics. Website / Email
Mo Pareles (Assistant Professor, English, University of British Columbia) teaches medieval literature. She currently researches the mutual construction of species, sexual, and ethnic difference in medieval English religious literature. Website / Email
If you have questions about our webpage or our programming, please contact Alexander Cosh.