In the current climate of a global ecological crisis, visions and representations of the Nordic environment are undergoing a swift change. Traditionally, imagery of the Nordic and Arctic areas has been heavily influenced by the national Romantic ideas of purity and pristine wilderness, which still inform our common notions about the Northern nature. In recent years, however, the Northern environment has become a political hotspot, where the effects of global climate change are readily visible. The Arctic is warming faster than any other region on Earth, and visions of the future in the Nordic region are adopting increasingly concerning qualities.
The third workshop of the Ecocritical Network for Scandinavian Studies will focus on environmental change in Nordic fiction. We provide a platform for scholars to investigate how environmental issues are represented in the Nordic fiction across media, and how the physical impact of ecological transformation affects our environmental imagination. We do not intend to limit our perspective on today’s ecological challenges, but rather wish to emphasize a historical perspective on how physical changes in the environment are connected to new kinds of cultural representations and new ways of seeing and thinking about the world around us. By examining the hopes and fears associated with the changing environment, we wish to contribute to a fuller understanding of ecological issues in Nordic fiction.
Paper proposals are invited on topics including but not limited to the following (all in relation to Nordic literatures and cultures):
– Changing visions of the future: dystopias and utopias
– Changing representations of wilderness
– Changes in the urban environments
– Changing landscapes
– Changes in/of Nordic flora and fauna
The workshop will take place at Tampere University in Tampere, Finland, on November 15–16, 2019.
The workshop language will be English.
The workshop is arranged by the Ecocritical Network for Scandinavian Studies (ENSCAN) in collaboration with the research project Darkening Visions: Dystopian Fiction in Contemporary Finnish Literature at the Tampere University (Kone Foundation, 2015–2019).