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Gender and Politics

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Rachel Carson Died of Breast Cancer: The Coming of Age of Feminist Environmentalism


Seager, Joni. 2003. “Rachel Carson Died of Breast Cancer: The Coming of Age of Feminist Environmentalism.” Signs 28 (3): 945–72.

Author: Joni Seager


To discuss the state of feminist environmentalism, discussion opens with an examination of ecofeminism. Arguing that debates surrounding ecofeminism have exhausted their intellectual & political returns, recent feminist environmental scholarship on animal rights, public health, & global political economy is reviewed. Some remarks are then offered on the "population question," particularly with respect to how environmental policy is underpinned by the blaming of poor, minority, & non-Euro-American women for global environmental ills; the critical feminist environmentalist literature on populationism is briefly touched on. 

Topics: Economies, Environment, Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Health, Rights Regions: Americas Countries: United States of America

Year: 2003

Healing the Wounds: The Promise of Ecofeminism


Plant, Judith. 1989. Healing the Wounds: The Promise of Ecofeminism. Philadelphia, PA: New Society Publishers.

Author: Judith Plant



Twenty-five activist authors--including Ursula LeGuin, Vandana Shiva, Margot Adler and Joanna Macy—strive to unite the visions and energies of the feminist and ecological perspectives. Healing the Wounds draws together the personal, political and spiritual into one enlivening whole. This is the book, and these are the practitioners, that started the movement (Summary from Google Books).

Table of Contents:

Toward a New World: An Introduction
Judith Plant

1. Remembering Who We Are: The Meaning of Ecofeminism. Split Culture
Susan Griffin

2. The Ecology of Feminism and the Feminism of Ecology
Ynestra King

3. A New Movement, a New Hope: East Wind, West Wind, and the Wind from the South
Corinne Kumar D'Souza

4. Mama Coyote Talks to the Boys
Sharon Doubiago

5. Women/Wilderness
Ursula K. Le Guin

6. Healing All Our Relations: Ecofeminist Politics. Poem: Tampons
Ellen Bass

7. First Mother and the Rainbow Children
Anne Cameron

8. Women Act: Women and Environmental Protection in India
Pamela Philipose

9. Speaking for the Earth: The Haida Way

10. Development, Ecology, and Women
Vandana Shiva

11. A Power of Numbers
Rachel Bagby

12. From Healing Herbs to Deadly Drugs: Western Medicine's War Against the Natural World
Marti Kheel

13. She Is Alive in You: Ecofeminist Spirituality. Poem: A Story of Beginnings

14. Invoking the Grove
Deena Metzger

15. Toward an Ecofeminist Spirituality
Charlene Spretnak

16. The Give and the Take
Dale Colleen Hamilton

17. Toward an Ecological-Feminist Theology of Nature
Rosemary Radford Ruether

18. The Juice of the Mystery
Margot Adler

19. Sacred Land, Sacred Sex
Dolores LaChapelle

20. Lakshmi Ashram: A Gandhian Perspective in the Himalayan Foothills
Radha Bhatt

21. Feminist Earth-Based Spirituality and Ecofeminism

22. The Circle Is Gathering: Ecofeminist Community. Poem: Lost Arrows and the Feather People
Ursula K. Le Guin

23. Survival on Earth: The Meaning of Feminism
Dorothy Dinnerstein

24. Awakening to the Ecological Self
Joanna Macy

25. Wings of the Eagle: A Conversation with Marie Wilson

26. The Subjective Side of Power
Margo Adair and Sharon Howell

27. Community: Meeting Our Deepest Needs
Helen Forsey

28. Consensus and Community: A Conversation with Caroline Estes

29. The Circle is Gathering
Judith Plant

Topics: Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Gender, Religion Regions: Americas, Asia, South Asia Countries: India, United States of America

Year: 1989

Moon Phases, Menstrual Cycles, and Mother Earth: The Construction of a Special Relationship between Women and Nature


Nordgaard, Kari. 1999. “Moon Phases, Menstrual Cycles, and Mother Earth: The Construction of a Special Relationship between Women and Nature.” Ethics and the Environment 4 (2): 197-209.

Author: Kari Nordgaard



“This paper will explore a number of contradictions to the theme of a special relationship between women and nature by examining associations between men and nature and ways that women may be considered distance from nature. I will suggest a variety of reasons why literature in women and environment, ecofeminism, and feminist political ecology has chosen this particular story about a special connection between women and nature (and thus failed to include other stories), and I will ask whether ecofeminist constructions of gender inadvertently reinforce the very social and ecological relations so many of us critique. Although much of my discussion will be directed towards ecofeminism, the fields of women and environment and feminist political ecology share the emphasis on women and nature to which I refer. I recognize that whether theorists see relationships between women and nature as biological or social has been the subject of much writing and criticism between theorists who consider themselves to be in different fields. But at this point, the fact that there is now such a large body of literature focusing on relationships between women and nature (or environment) sets up a cultural story that is present across fields. I will use the term special relationship to refer to the full range of ways that women and nature have been connected” (Nordgaard 1999, 198).

Topics: Environment, Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Feminist Political Ecology, Gender Regions: Americas Countries: United States of America

Year: 1999

Ecowomanism and Ecological Reparations


Harris, Melanie L. 2017. “Ecowomanism and Ecological Reparations.” In The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Religion and Ecology, edited by John Hart, 195–202. New York; UK: John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated.

Author: Melanie L. Harris


This chapter examines the contributions that can be made to ecological justice from the templates of social justice that have emerged from the BlackLivesMatter movement. Specifically, an ecowomanist perspective is employed to explore anti-racist reparations paradigms that can be translated into ecological reparations work. 

Keywords: climate change, ecological reparation, ecowomanism, racial justice, white privilege, womanist religious thought

Topics: Environment, Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Race Regions: Americas, North America Countries: United States of America

Year: 2017

Ecowomanism: Black Women, Religion, and the Environment


Harris, Melanie L. 2016. “Ecowomanism: Black Women, Religion, and the Environment.” The Black Scholar 46 (3): 27–39

Author: Melanie L. Harris


“This essay is an introduction to ecowomanism, an interdisciplinary discourse in womanist thought that reflects upon black women’s religious orientations and connections with the earth. It serves as an overview and provides a survey of ecowomanist discourse. Ecowomanism centers the religious, theological, and spiritual perspectives of black women and women of color as they confront multilayered oppressions such as racism, classism, sexism, and environmental injustice. In the essay I explicate the theoretical foundations for ecowomanism, namely the womanist writings of Alice Walker, the environmental justice movement, and its relation to eco-feminism. I also describe the important roots of African American religious thought for an ecowomanist approach. In addition, I provide a brief survey of four important sources for ecowomanist research from the theological perspectives of Karen Baker Fletcher, Delores S. Williams, the ecological perspective of Shamara Shantu Riley, and the scholarly insights and personal reflection of African theologian, Mercy Amba Oduyoye" (Harris 2016, 27).

Topics: Class, Environment, Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Race, Religion Regions: Africa, Americas, North America Countries: United States of America

Year: 2016

Women, Ecology and Health: Rebuilding Connections


Hamrell, Sven, and Olle Nordberg, eds. 1993. Women, Ecology and Health: Rebuilding Connections. Uppsala, Sweden: The Dag Hammarskjöld Centre and Kali for Women.

Authors: Sven Hamrell, Olle Nordberg


The seminar on 'Women, Ecology and Health: Rebuilding Connections', which has provided the basis for the material presented in this issue of Development Dialogue, was held in Bangalore in southern India from July 17 to 22, 1991. It was jointly organised by the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation and the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Natural Resource Policy, Dehra Dun, India, and moderated by the Director of the latter foundation, Vandana Shiva. It brought together 25 participants from seven South Asian and Southeast Asian countries and one participant from the United States. Both foundations are grateful to the participants for their valuable contributions to the seminar discussions and to the authors for the pains they have taken in thoroughly revising and updating their papers.The basic idea behind the organisation of the Bangalore seminar was the conviction that, twenty years after 'the Environment' was placed on the international agenda, the time was ripe to take stock, from a women's perspective, of two decades of development in the environmental field. Furthermore, an important factor was the growing recognition that across the world women are rebuilding connections with nature and renewing the insight that what people do to nature directly affects them, too; that there is, in fact, no insular divide between the environment and their own bodies and health (Summary from original source).

Table of Contents:

  1. Women, Ecology and Health: An Introduction
    Vandana Shiva
  2. After the Forest: AIDS as Ecological Collapse in Thailand
    Ann Danaiya Usher
  3. Killing Legally with Toxic Waste: Women and the Environment in the United States
    Penny Newman
  4. Environmental Degradation and Subversion of Health
    Mira Shiva
  5. Using Technology, Choosing Sex the Campaign Against Sex Determination and the Question of Choice
    FASDSP Group
  6. Legal Rights… and Wrongs: Internationalising Bhopal
    Indira Jaising, C. Sathyamala
  7. ‘Green Earth, Women’s Power, Human Liberation’: Women in Peasant Movements in India
    Gail Omvedt
  8. Filipino Peasant Women in Defence of Life
    Loreta B. Ayupan, Teresita G. Oliveros
  9. Ethnic Conflict in Sri Lanka: Its Ecological and Political Consequences
    Rita Sebastian
  10. The Seed and the Earth: Biotechnology and the Colonisation of Regeneration
    Vandana Shiva

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Environment, Ethnicity, Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Health Regions: Americas, North America, Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: India, Thailand, United States of America

Year: 1993

Diane Wilson vs. Union Carbide: Ecofeminism and the Elitist Charge of "Essentialism"


Godfrey, Phoebe. 2005. "Diane Wilson vs. Union Carbide: Ecofeminism and the Elitist Charge of 'Essentialism.'" Capitalism Nature Socialism 16 (4): 37-56. 

Author: Phoebe Godfrey


“I am especially interested in whether the academic charge that ecofeminism is essentialist and contaminated by capitalist patriarchal ideology can withstand political scrutiny. I argue that the ultimate test of a theory is its outcomes, because all theory is a form of practice, and all practice incorporates a form of theory. It is when the connection remains unarticulated and a process of privileging one side over the other emerges that constructive critique becomes counterproductive. So, with an over literal emphasis on discursive practices and a corresponding lack of conceptual tools for discussing material objects and relations, constructionist academics are made uneasy by feminist, environmentalist, or ecofeminist activists, who situate their politics in the material experiences and language of everyday life” (Godfrey 2005, 37-8).

Topics: Environment, Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Gender, Women Regions: Americas, Asia, South Asia Countries: India, United States of America

Year: 2005


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