Simon C. Estok

Publications (books)

English 3055: Introduction to the Literary Environmental Humanities
English 2005: History of English Literature 1
English 5136: Renaissance Self-Fashioning
Publications (books)
Publications (articles)
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Ecocriticism and Shakespeare: Reading Ecophobia. New York and London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011.



Shortlisted for the Shakespeare's Globe First Book Award (2012).

Winner of the "Writing in the Humanities Book Award" from the National Research Foundation, Korea (2011)!

"For those of us who turn to him for intellectual provocation, this book is a more-than-welcome contribution to Shakespeare scholarship, to ecocriticism, and to critical theory." - Dan Brayton, Middlebury College, Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and the Environment

"'Ecophobia' has already begun to gain currency, making Estok the first early modernist to have a perceptible impact on ecocriticism. This alone would make Ecocriticism and Shakespeare a milestone work, setting aside its other considerable merits. It balances the claims of historicism and presentism, activism and theoretical integrity more deftly than previous studies. It unearths fresh or unsung categories in Shakespearean criticism such as environmental fear, disgust, and sleep. It dares those who teach Shakespeare to practice an activist pedagogy that engages students in environmental politics." -
Early Modern Literary Studies

“In this thorough and original study, Estok widens the scope of ecological criticism in two ways. Estok contributes to the emerging field of early modern ecological studies in an excellent investigation of Shakespeare and outlines a theory of ecophobia, tracing its genesis through gender and psychoanalytic thinking. Estok challenges us to think deeply about ecology, theory, and culture.”—Timothy Morton, Professor of English, University of California Davis and author of The Ecological Thought 

“In this ecology of reading and reading of ecology, Estok moves beyond the earlier studies of nature in Shakespeare to an important exploration of reading and representation that addresses the crisis in our environment and that provides another way to understand and resist alienation and stereotyping.”--Jonathan Hart, Professor of English and Comparative Literature, University of Alberta

A fresh and theoretically sophisticated analysis of Shakespearean drama through the lens of ecophobia.  Estok's work is known for making the uncomfortable inaccuracies between theory and practice visible, highlighting the distinction between ecocriticism’s activist origins and its institutionalization within the academy.  He persistently brings questions of economic privilege, race, gender, sexuality, and nation to bear on environmental and literary topics.”--Greta Gaard, Associate Professor of English, University of Wisconsin-River Falls and author of The Nature of Home

“This is the book we have been awaiting from Simon Estok. Theoretically challenging to both Shakespeareans and ecocritics alike, its combinations of ethics and scholarship, close reading and polemics, originality and lucidity, make it essential reading for students and scholars who want to see cutting-edge criticism at work.”--Terry Gifford, Visiting Professor at University of Chichester and Profesor Honorario en Universidad de Alicante and author of Green Voices, Reconnecting with John Muir, and Pastoral 

This book offers the term “ecophobia” as a way of understanding and organizing representations of contempt for the natural world.  Estok argues that this vocabulary is both necessary to the developing area of ecocritical studies and for understandings of the representations of “Nature” in Shakespeare.  Engaging close readings with theoretical sophistication make this book a path-breaking contribution to both Shakespearean scholarship and the burgeoning field of ecocriticism.

East Asian Ecocriticisms: A Critical Reader.  Eds. Simon C. Estok and W.C. Kim.  New York and London: Macmillan, 2013.



"As an American ecocritic who has visited East Asia more than fifty times in the past twenty years, I am delighted to welcome this effort to introduce East Asian scholarship to Western readers. These fourteen voices represent one fascinating petal of the lotus flower of East Asian ecocriticism. I hope readers will take this volume as an invitation to continue learning about the diverse vernacular ecocritical perspectives in East Asia (and throughout the world). Good ideas should flow in many directions." - Scott Slovic, Professor, University of Idaho, USA and editor of ISLE: Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment

"This volume contributes to a reorienting of the transnational praxis of ecocriticism through a commingling of perspectives, theories, literary texts, and cultural phenomena. As a portent of even greater contributions in the future, these essays embody the best of an ethical ecocritical engagement." - Patrick D. Murphy, Professor and Chair, English, UCF, USA and author of Ecocritical Explorations in Literary and Cultural Studies and other works

"Occidental activists and scholars will be surprised to discover how deeply East Asian thinkers have already gone in the field of ecocriticism. The environmental problems faced by Korea, Japan, and China are enormous. Writers and all other concerned people in these landscapes have seen it happening and are responding deeply and intelligently. This book is an eye-opener for all the rest of us." - Gary Snyder, Professor, UC Davis, USA

"With original essays by speakers of Chinese, Hangul, Japanese and Taiwanese - who write compellingly in English - this collection reveals the specific geo-political and cultural situations that are shaping the aesthetics of the most revered and cutting-edge literatures being read by one-fourth of the world's population. These essays introduce the wild species thriving in the DMZ, a place studded with two million land mines, and explain the significance of the endangered pink dolphins of western Taiwan and Xiamui, China. Each essay excellently gives a sense of how a decade of vibrant work to establish ecocriticism in East Asia has powerfully shifted the global environmental humanities in necessary and important ways that will make every ecocritic want to read this book." - Joni Adamson, Senior Sustainability Scholar, Global Institute of Sustainability, Arizona State University, USA and 2012 President of the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment


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International Perspectives in Feminist Ecocriticism.  Eds. Simon C. Estok, Greta Gaard, and Serpil Oppermann.  New York: Routledge, 2013.


"Gaard, Estok, and Oppermann bring together vibrant essays that range, for example, from an explosion of dioxins in Seveso, Italy, that touches off strong political and ideological polemics over women and their bodies, to discussions in Australia of how to bring postcolonial, ecological, and feminist understandings together to build a grounded ethics and aesthetics of decolonization, to a group of "dog mothers" in Taiwan that defiantly cares for stray animals as a way to resist a massively industrialized economy built on trenchant, institutionalized, and unspoken androcentrism. As a whole, the book powerfully illustrates why feminist views, methods, and interpretations, examined from specifically international contexts, must become more central to the field of ecocriticism.
--Joni Adamson, Professor, English and Environmental Humanities, School of Letters and Sciences and Senior Sustainability Scholar, Global Institute of Sustainability, Arizona State University, US
"I have always felt that there is something intrinsically "feminist" about the practice of ecocriticism, going all the way back to early ecocritical concerns with wild places and marginalized literary genres. One of the central ecocritical urges is the impulse, à la feminism, to critique normativities, to question mainstream or "dominant" ways of viewing the world, particularly those which are unjust and unsustainable. This new volume offers a rich variety of approaches to this vital project, reinforcing our understanding of "feminist ecocriticism" (take note of this important term) as a major dimension of ecocritical thought throughout the world.
--Scott Slovic, University of Idaho, US, Editor of ISLE: Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment
"Each chapter raises enough issues, ideas, and inspiration for a whole series of further books at the cutting edge of a reinvigorated ecofeminist practice. These authors are driven by a rigorous sense of where feminist ecocriticism has come from, and why it needs to explore the richly diverse and materially alive ethical dramas of gendered ontologies."
--Terry Gifford, Visiting Professor at Bath Spa University, Profesor Honorifico at Universidad de Alicante and co-editor of Feminismo/s 22 ‘Ecofeminism’
"This collection affirms the ongoing importance of feminist perspectives in the environmental humanities. Working both from and against earlier traditions of ecofeminism, contributors to this volume explore issues of gender, sex, natalism, apocalypticism, embodiment, violence, justice, race, species, and colonialism as key analytic concerns for feminist ecocriticism. The collection thus develops a new understanding of ecofeminism, one that is much more attentive to power, intersectionality and diversity than earlier works in the field.
--Catriona Sandilands, Professor, Faculty of Environmental Studies, York
University, and coeditor of Queer Ecologies: Sex, Nature, Politics, Desire (2010).


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