Ecofeminist Landscapes in Anita Desai’s Cry, The Peacock and Where Shall We Go This Summer

Authors

Keywords:

Cultural Landscapes, Psychological Landscapes, Ecology, Ecofeminism, Environment, nature-culture, Anita Desai, Tropical India

Abstract

In modern parlance, landscape can be understood in various contexts that range from urban and rural, to emotional and repressive, to revolutionary. The concept of landscape is thus an entanglement of nature and culture. It is simultaneously a spatial and mental entity and involves a temporal dimension (Tress & Tress, 2001). Through a close reading of Anita Desai’s novels Cry, The Peacock and Where Shall We Go This Summer, this paper investigates the environmental landscapes of the tropical Indian settings, and the psychological landscapes of the two female protagonists. The novels self-exploratory journeys of the central female characters Maya and Sita, bring forth the anguish of middle-class Indian women who live a life of lack, loss and longing in an oppressive patriarchal system that does not give them space to express themselves or be heard. Through these narratives, the paper examines how landscapes of the feminine psyche, landscapes of tropical India and landscapes of middle-class Hindu women present an ecofeminist quest for integration of self through nature. 

Author Biography

Prachi Priyanka, Sharda University, India

Dr Prachi Priyanka holds a PhD in English literature. Her doctoral thesis is an illuminative study on the convergences between poetry and painting from the publication of G. E. Lessing’s Laocoon to modern times. Her areas of interest include intertextuality and visual culture, Indian literature, Partition narratives and Victorian studies. Prachi’s short stories collection ‘Thistle & Weeds’ was published in 2016, and her recent book Caste, Class and Gender in Modern Indian Literature (2021), published by Authorspress, collects together critical essays examining multiple intersections and interjections of gender with other identities. Prachi, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of English, School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Sharda University, India.

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Published

2022-03-30

How to Cite

Priyanka, P. (2022). Ecofeminist Landscapes in Anita Desai’s Cry, The Peacock and Where Shall We Go This Summer. ETropic: Electronic Journal of Studies in the Tropics, 21(1), 306–325. Retrieved from https://journals.jcu.edu.au/etropic/article/view/3874