“The center figure in a ménage à trios”: An Ecofeminist Reading of Sexuality

Tia Lalani

Abstract


This article suggests an ecofeminist lens to analyze the presence of sexuality in literature, so as to reconceive the idea of human kind’s domination over nature. An analysis of the rampant sexuality present in the novel Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver, and the two short stories: “Sandstone Seduction” by Katie Lee and “Gabimichigami” by Gretchen Legler, reveals sex as a means to connect with nature in an unorthodox way.  Prodigal Summer traces three stories woven together by sex and reproduction, in which case nature is highly valued. The two short stories offer characters who have a strong sexual bond with facets of non-human nature, an unconventional interaction that leaves the reader with a sense of appreciation for nature that may not otherwise be so easily achieved. All three stories also depict relationships between characters that are completely vested in nature in order to foster a sense of admiration for the natural world. In presenting cases of sexualized nature, these authors offer an ecofeminist analysis in which humanity’s dominion over the natural world can be questioned, and ultimately, abandoned.

 


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