My presentation on "Ecocriticism in the poems of Robert Frost"
Ecocriticism in the Poems of
Name: Riddhi S. Jani
Roll No: 23
Paper: 10, The American Literature
Submitted To: Department of English,
M. K. Bhavnagar University
What is Ecocriticism ?
• In simple words, “Ecocriticism is a study of the
relationship between literature and physical
• Lawrence Buell is the pioneer of Ecocriticism.
• Influenced by Emerson.
• What do Ecocritics do ? Or what the Ecocritics study in
any literary work ?
• “Ecocriticism takes as its subject the interconnections
between nature and culture…” (by Cheryll Glotfelty)
• “All that is separate from us, all which Philosophy
distinguishes as the NOT ME, that is, both nature and art, all
other men and my own body, must be ranked under this name,
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
• “Human beings [are] ecologically or
environmentally embedded.” by Lawrence Buell
• “Remediation of humankind’s alienation from the
natural world” –Buell
• “World of nature and the world of men are parts of
the same world.” –Dana Phillips (An Ecocritic)
• “Humanity is literally part of Nature” –Neil
• Another concern of
most of the Ecocritics is
• Luc Ferry suggests that
nature “should be
and cultivated, in
• They thinks nature as
controllable by humans.
Ecocriticism and Robert Frost
• Robert Frost (1874-1963)
is an American poet.
• He won Pulitzer Prize in
poetry four times.
• Mainly a nature poet.
• Why to see his poems
from an Ecocritical
Ecocriticism in Frost’s Poem
• First comes rhythm and style that Frost mostly
didn’t write in free verse.
• He gives most of the place to nature elements
like wood, trees, flower, domestic animals, land
• He treats nature in both positive and negative
• The rural life is depicted largely in his poems.
• In the poem “The gift Outright”,
“The land was ours before we were the land's.
She was our land more than a hundred years.”
• Land (i.e.nature) is personified here.
(Why humans are not
• By these lines we can see that Frost sees nature as ‘the other’ and
as ‘the thing’ or as ‘a commodity’, which can be given, taken,
bought, sold or won.
• In the poem “Mending Wall”:
• Wall and trees:
• Trees seem to be the cause of the separation of the
“There where it is we do not need the wall:
He is all pine and I am apple orchard.
My apple trees will never get across
And eat the cones under his pines, I tell him.”
• Juxtaposition between human construction and
• In the poem “Design”:
• He questions to the destructiveness of nature.
“Assorted characters of death and blight”
“What brought the kindred spider to that height,
Then steered the white moth thither in the night?
What but design of darkness to appall?—”
• He is accepting only the beauty of the nature, for his
own purpose. And he is not seeing nature as its whole.
• In the poem “The Road not Taken”:
• In this poem, he after thinking logically chooses one path
which is “less traveled by”.
“Then took the other, as just as fair
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear”
“In leaves no step had trodden black.”
“I shall be telling this with a sigh”
• In the underlined lines we find
• In the poem “Stopping by Woods”:
• That “otherness” between human and nature is
• And the anthropocentric idea is reflected here.
“My little horse must think it queer”
“The woods are lovely, dark, and deep
But I have promises to keep
And miles to go before I sleep,”
• In the poem “Fire and Ice”:
• It seems that Frost is taking the ‘ice’ as negative
“I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great”
“A snow-drop spider” (Design)
“He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.” and “frozen lake” (Stopping
• This is how we can do a keen reading of this
poem from an Ecocritical sight.
• In our subconscious the feeling of being
superior than nature is always laid.
• So, in this way we can do the ecocritical
reading that how the writer treats the nature.