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Seeds of Change
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Barbara Kingsolverʼs books have sold millions of copies. The Poisonwood Bible was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize, and her work is studied in courses ranging from English-as-a-second-language classes to seminars in doctoral programs. Yet, until now, there has been relatively little scholarly analysis of her writings. Seeds of Change: Critical Essays on Barbara Kingsolver, edited by Priscilla V. Leder, is the first collection of essays examining the full range of Kingsolverʼs literary output. The articles in this new volume provide analysis, context, and commentary on all of Kingsolverʼs novels, her poetry, her two essay collections, and her full-length non-fiction memoir, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life. Professor Leder begins Seeds of Change with a brief critical biography that traces Kingsolverʼs development as a writer. Leder also includes an overview of the scholarship on Kingsolverʼs oeuvre. Organized by subject matter, the 14 essays in the book are divided into three sections that deal with recurrent themes in Kingsolverʼs compositions: identity, social justice, and ecology. The pieces in this ground-breaking volume draw upon contemporary critical approaches—ecocritical, postcolonial, feminist, and disability studies—to extend established lines of inquiry into Kingsolverʼs writing and to take them in new directions. By comparing Kingsolver with earlier writers such as Joseph Conrad and Henry David Thoreau, the contributors place her canon in literary context and locate her in cultural contexts by revealing how she re-works traditional narratives such as the Western myth. They also address the more controversial aspects of her writings, examining her political advocacy and her relationship to her reader, in addition to exploring her vision of a more just and harmonious world. Fully indexed with a comprehensive works-cited section, Seeds of Change gives scholars and students important insight and analysis which will deepen and broaden their understanding and experience of Barbara Kingsolverʼs work.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Frontmatter
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. v-vi
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  1. Preface
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Introduction
  2. pp. 1-23
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  1. Part 1. Identity
  2. p. 25
  1. Gardens of Auto Parts: American Western Myth and Native American Myth in The Bean Trees
  2. pp. 27-46
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  1. To Live Deliberately: Feminist Theory in Action in High Tide in Tucson
  2. pp. 47-70
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  1. Women, a Dark Continent? The Poisonwood Bible as a Feminist Response to Conrad’s Heart of Darkness
  2. pp. 71-86
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  1. Trauma and Memory in Animal Dreams
  2. pp. 87-108
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  1. “Hemmed In”: Place, Disability, and Maternity in Animal Dreams and The Poisonwood Bible
  2. pp. 109-126
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  1. Part 2. Social Justice
  2. p. 127
  1. “Give Me Your Hand”: Accessibility, Commitment, and the Challenge of Cliché in Kingsolver’s Poetry
  2. pp. 129-144
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  1. Wild Indians: Kingsolver’s Representation of Native America
  2. pp. 145-156
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  1. The White Imagination at Work in Pigs in Heaven
  2. pp. 157-174
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  1. Imagined Geographies
  2. pp. 175-198
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  1. Earthbound Rhetoric and Praxis: Authentic Patriotism in a Time of Abstractions
  2. pp. 199-210
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  1. Part 3. Ecology
  2. p. 211
  1. Remembering Our Ecological Place: Environmental Engagement in Kingsolver’s Nonfiction
  2. pp. 213-232
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  1. Contingency, Cultivation, and Choice: The Garden Ethic in Prodigal Summer
  2. pp. 233-250
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  1. Celebrating a Lively Earth: Children, Nature, and the Role of Mentors in Prodigal Summer
  2. pp. 251-262
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  1. Together at the Table: Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and Thoreau’s Wild Fruits
  2. pp. 263-276
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  1. Works Cited
  2. pp. 277-292
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  1. Contributors
  2. pp. 293-296
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 297-300
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