Louise Westling

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  • The Logos of the Living World: Merleau-Ponty, Animals, and Language
  • Editor, The Cambridge Companion to Literature and the Environment
  • Sacred Groves and Ravaged Gardens: The Fiction of Eudora Welty, Carson McCullers, and Flannery O'Connor
  • Eudora Welty
  • The Green Breast of the New World: Landscape, Gender and American Fiction.
  • Editor, He Included Me: The Autobiography of Sarah Rice
  • Editor, Witness to Injustice by David Frost, Jr.

Recent articles:

  • "Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty, and the Question of Biological Continuism," (New Formations 2012)
  • "The Zoosemiotics of Sheep Herding with Dogs," in The Semiotics of Animal Representations (2013)
  • "Literature and Ecology," in Teaching Ecocrticism and Green Studies (2012)
  • "Merleau-Ponty's Ecophenomenology," in Ecocritical Theory: New European Approaches (2011)
  • "Merleau-Ponty's Human-Animal Intertwining," Configurations (2010
  • "Virginia Woolf and the Flesh of the World" (New Literary History 1999)
  • "Darwin in Arcadia: Brute Being and the Human Animal Dance from Gilgamesh to Virginia Woolf" (Anglia 2006)
  • "Literature, the Environment, and the Question of the Posthuman" (Nature in Literary and Cultural Studies  2006)
  • "Heidegger and Merleau-Ponty: Ecopoetics and the Problem of Humanism" (Culture, Creativity and Environment 2007).



I teach in both the English Department and the Environmental Studies Program. My current research focuses on ecophenomenology and literature, animality, and embodiment in language.  A related activity is herding sheep with Australian Kelpies, a good way to learn and develop cross-species communication.  Recent conference presentations have been

  • "The Human/Animality Dance of Sheep Herding," which draws upon Vicki Hearne's and Donna Haraway's work but extends their considerations with the phenomenological attention to language of Maurice Merleau-Ponty.
  • "Stranded on the Ark: Yann Martel's Life of Pi."
  • "Merleau-Ponty's Human-Animality Intertwining""


The Green Breast of the New World

In searching American literary landscapes for what they can reveal about our attitudes toward nature and gender, The Green Breast of the New World considers symbolic landscapes in twentieth-century American fiction, the characters who inhabit those landscapes, and the gendered traditions that can influence the figuration of both of these fictional elements.

The Logos of the Living World: Merleau-Ponty, Animals, and Language

Presenting the philosophy of Maurice Merleau-Ponty as a theoretical grounding for studies in environmental humanities, ... Read more


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