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Although ecocriticism was largely developed by Americanists in English departments in the western United States and marked by a coolness toward the theoretical and historicist methods of its day, the most recent wave of ecocritical work has turned toward the global and the theoretical, closely engaging with critical geography, postcolonial studies, political philosophy, aesthetics, environmental justice, regional studies, and other fields. This special issue of American Literature will showcase the ways that ecocriticism, now globalized and theoretically robust, might return to its American origins to revise and reinvigorate American studies. Guest editors Michael Ziser (University of California, Davis) and Monique Allewaert (Emory University) invite submissions that imagine a forward-looking "big-tent" ecocriticism that tests the potential of environmental approaches to illuminate a range of American cultural and literary concerns. Possible topics include: the relation of climate change to post- and trans-nationalisms; how writing in the digital era attempts to evoke environments/place; whether recent theorizations of animality might transform American racial and political tropes; what effect the environment has on conceptions of subjectivity and citizenship; and how current debates about "posthumanism" bear on environmental projects.

Submissions of 11,000 words or less (including endnotes) should be submitted electronically at by 31 August 2010. When choosing a submission type, select "New Submission-Special Issue." For assistance with the submission process, please contact the office of American Literature at (919) 684–3948 or Please direct other questions to Michael Ziser (, Monique Allewaert (, or Priscilla Wald (