Dying trees in globalizing Hindi literature: environment, middle classes, and posthuman awareness

  • Alessandra Consolaro Università di Torino


This article presents themes and arguments concerning the relationships between India’s middle classes and the complex meanings and materialities of the environment with reference to literary treatments in the Hindi field, drawing also on environmental, social-cultural and political literature. It focuses on examples from Hindi short stories (The neem tree by Chandan Pandey and Death of a tree by Alka Saraogi) and poetry (The killing of a tree by Kunvar Narayan), dealing with civic indifference and the public sphere; environmental activism and ecological thinking; and environmental metaphors of creative writing.


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Author Biography

Alessandra Consolaro, Università di Torino

Alessandra Consolaro is Associate Professor of Hindi Language and Literature at the University of Turin. Her field of interest and research is interdisciplinary, focusing on South Asian history (Ri-orientarsi nella Storiografia dell’Asia Meridionale. Rappresentazioni e Intersezioni. Torino 2008; Madre India e la Parola. La Lingua Hindi nelle Università “Nazionali”di Varanasi (1900-1940). Alessandria 2003); contemporary Hindi fiction: critical study and translation (La Prosa nella Cultura Letteraria Hindī dell’India Coloniale e Postcoloniale. Torino 2011; Premcand, शतरंज के खिलाड़ी, I giocatori di scacchi/ شطرنج کی بازی, La partita a scacchi. Parallel text edition, transl. from Hindi and ed. by A. Consolaro, transl. form Urdu by D. Bredi, Milano 2015); colonial and postcolonial theory, feminist critique and gender studies (“Respectably Queer? Queer Visibility and Homophobia in Hindi Literature”. DEP Deportate, Esuli e Profughe 25 (2014): 1-16; Induismo queer: dalla mitologia all’attivismo per il riconoscimento dei diritti umani e civili diritti in Daimon: Omosessualità e matrimonio nei diritti delle religioni e degli Stati, numero speciale 2015: 165-185).


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Movement 2: Imagining the plants and metaphorizing the social / Immagini vegetali e metafore del sociale