The IUP Journal of English Studies
'Environmentalism of the Poor' and Ecopolitics: A Contemporary Reading of Arundhati Roy's Walking with the Comrades

Article Details
Pub. Date : Sep, 2022
Product Name : The IUP Journal of English Studies
Product Type : Article
Product Code : IJES040922
Author Name : Risha Baruah
Availability : YES
Subject/Domain : Arts & Humanities
Download Format : PDF Format
No. of Pages : 14



With the 'greening' of postcolonial studies in the 1990s, theoretical and literary efforts of the Global South have aimed to understand the politics of biopower contestation as managed by imperialism. Towards this end, the concept of 'environmentalism of the poor' emerged, which gained global applicability for understanding the geopolitical ecology. As an approach, it merged social, political, ethical and ecological concerns of the Global South as it dealt with issues like ecological imperialism, resource colonialism, global capitalism, high modernism, indigenous territorial rights, resistance, forced migration, etc. Acknowledging these ideas as pressing concerns in the Anthropocenean period, Arundhati Roy, in her work Walking with the Comrades (2011), has elaborately addressed them with the motive to investigate the critical understanding of cultural and environmental imperialism in the contemporary neocolonial and postnatural period.

Towards this end, the paper attempts to not only expose the power structures and asymmetric resource flows in the neocolonial period but also locate dispossessed and marginalized presences, interactions and interpretations in the human-nature discourses that have environmentalism racism as its hallmark. In addition to this, an attempt is also made to situate indigenous experiences and narratives into mainstream critical approaches with the intention to initiate the process of reterritorialization and reinhabitation of the natives through pluralist dialogism of the Global South.

The inclusion of environmental concerns and considerations in humanities witnessed a visible 'green' reorientation of literary and theoretical efforts through the 1970s, which subsequently led to the emergence of several hybrid approaches that attempted to understand the complex relationship between humans and nature through different