Into the Woods: Toward a Material Poetics of the Tropical Forest in Philippine Literature
Keywords:tropical forest, Material Poetics, Philippine literature, new materialism, Tropical Materialism, tropicality, more-than-human
This study considers how the tropical forest as a material and discursive space mediates the ways in which history is imagined in Philippine literary texts and literary production. Mobilizing ideas from new materialism, material poetics, and tropicality, the paper looks at generative moments from indigenous and revolutionary literature—two broad traditions whose conditions of possibility are inextricably linked with the materiality of the tropical forest and thus inevitably evince the structuring force of such nonhuman agencies and subjectivities. By disclosing how the “more than human” is constitutive of history and historical subject formation, it seeks to foreground the agency of Philippine forests in actively and collaboratively contesting the catastrophic violence of capital and state-making on people and the natural world.
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