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[논문] 자연 / 물에 대한 휴머니즘적 시각의 생태주의 고찰 - D. H. Lawrence의 「뱀」(Snake)이 모색한 문학생태학적 전망 -
An Attempt of Literary Ecology to Revalue Natural Objects Represented in the So - Called Romantic Humanism : An Approach through D. H. Lawrence's Poem 「Snake」

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    At the start of the new century, it is fair to say that we face environmental challenges unprecedented in human history. Largely through human activity, life on Earth faces the greatest mass extinctions since the end of the dinosaur age. The natural resources that sustain life on this planet - air, water, and soil - are being polluted or depleted at alarming rates. The tendency in our culture is to treat such issues as simply scientific, technological, or political problems. But they are much more than this. These environmental and ecological controversies raise fundamental questions about what we as human beings value, about the kind of beings we are, the kinds of lives we should live, and the kind of world in which we might flourish. We can find much insight in Lawrence which leads us to solve the environmental and ecological problems of our only Earth. Lawrence's poems, especially "Snake", convince us that ecological thought is a "subversive subject" as Paul Sears suggests. Lawrence represents through poetical imagination what ecology is trying to subvert. Some of the possibilities that come to mind are: the accepted notion of what science does; the values and institutions of expansionary capitalism; the bias against nature in western religion(Christianity). All of these were targets of not only Lawrence but also the nineteenth-century Romantics. But Lawrence is different from those Romantics in that he perceives the relationship between parts and the whole and the dynamics of change that govern this whole. Lawrence shared the Romantic approach to nature with the previous Romantics; that is, it was concerned with relation, interdependence, and holism. These characteristics of Lawrence or Romantics are criticised by contemporary ecologists. The view received by Romantics is inclined to regard the wilderness as a static unchanging place and have a tendency to identify the wilderness with an idealized image as it existed at one particular point in time. Many ecocentric critics think that this view can see humans as separate from nature, perhaps drawing inspiration from it but nevertheless radically different from it. They stress the Darwinian understanding that humans are much a part of nature, neither transcendent to nor radically different from it. From that perspective, acceptance of a dualism of Romantics that man is different from nature can encourage conflict that man is against nature. The principle of objectivity demanded a cosmos stripped clean of all the emotional and spiritual qualities men and women theretofore had found in the natural world. The quest of objectivity also meant that the outer, physical world was to be kept firmly separated from all religious experience. The Romantic (or Lawrence's) rebellion was in large measure a refusal to grant scientific objectivity the authority it demanded as the only guide to truth and nature. According to Lawrence, one of the major faults of modem science including ecology was its contention that a man should coolly give his chief attention to the phenomenon which excites himself as something independent of himself. Lawrence's view of nature is that to see nature from an inner, personal, human perspective is a humble acknowledgment of correspondence and kinship. He says that if a man could not receive nature as an extension of himself, then it would be an alien world. A life-community Lawrence tried to construct is a community conceived on the ecological principle. In this life-community, not a detached, foreign world of objects as things, not even a system of merely economic relatedness, but a confluence of spirit and matter, must be the vision of Lawrence. Lawrence admitted that this deeper dimension of relationship could be explored or that it was much more important to do so.


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