chapter  6
18 Pages

Learning from Spaces of Play: Recording Emotional Practices in High Arctic Environmental Sciences

ByRichard C. Powell

This chapter discusses the rural novels of two contemporary Canadian writers: David Adams Richards and the late Matt Cohen and it explore how a contemporary version of masculine vitality is being harnessed for environmental ethics. In Eco-Man, gathers together the first collection of essays on masculinity and environmentalism, but the collection focuses primarily on providing positive images of men in nature, rather than examining constructions of masculinity. Richards's and Cohen's novels show emotional bodiment to be central to constructions of masculine identity, and also to imagining moral lives in rural places. Narrating ethics through the animal and other categories associated with the natural may appear to be a slippery slope to irrationality and ideological obfuscation. Cohen and Richards do situate masculine identities within particular historical and geographical junctures: their plots hinge on how transformations of rural lands and livelihoods disrupt and challenge cultural values and identities.