Clouding knowledge in the Anthropocene: Lisa Robertson’s The Weather and Caroline Bergvall’s Drift

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While the Anthropocene has emerged as a major critical paradigm across multiple disciplines in recent years, its conceptual, aesthetic and political dimensions demand further investigation. Responding to the fact that women’s experimental poetry has often been neglected in ecocriticism, this article draws on feminist new materialist thinking to consider possibilities for Anthropocene poetics in two contemporary poetic works: The Weather by Lisa Robertson and Drift by Caroline Bergvall. Focusing in particular on experimental and performative uses of clouds and fog, I argue that these works re-examine relationships between language(s), knowledge(s) and materiality in order to question ‘natural histories’ that remain implicit in the Anthropocene. By doing so, they develop distinctive poetics with the capacity to critique dominant Anthropocene epistemologies and logics, and register the uneven materialities of environmental change.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-96
JournalGreen Letters: Studies in Ecocriticism
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 6 Jun 2018


  • Anthropocene
  • clouds
  • experimental poetics
  • new materialisms

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