Macquarie University
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Walt Whitman, Gertrude Stein, and the poetry of bodily habitat

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posted on 2022-03-28, 13:12 authored by Sarah Fantini
The environmental humanities have recently experienced a 'material turn', and are increasingly considering the active role of matter in all discursive practices. Placing an emphasis on the relationship between human corporeality and textuality, this thesis applies a material ecocritical methodology to a comparative study of Walt Whitman's 1855 edition of Leaves of grass and Gertrude Steiner's Tender buttons (1914). Attentive to the ecocritical imperative to emphasise the physical world in literary analysis, the thesis examines the ways in which Whitman and Stein integrate the human body, the text, and the material environment to assert a poetics of bodily habitat which is increasingly relevant to the literary and environmental concerns of the present day. This thesis argues that Whitman and Stein's poetic innovations propose a human self constituted through its relationship with organic and inorganic matter.


Table of Contents

Introduction -- Chapter 1. Material language, material world -- Chapter 2. The limitless interior -- Chapter 3. The creative text -- Conclusion.


Theoretical thesis. Bibliography: pages 63-66

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


MRes, Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts, Department of English

Department, Centre or School

Department of English

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Toby Davidson


Copyright Sarah Fantini 2015. Copyright disclaimer:




1 online resource (66 pages)

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