At the beginning of the course, as I stated in my first blog post, my connection to the environment was essentially nonexistent. My surrounding environment has always been a backdrop to more important things- something to look at while I’m sprinting to class, a place to sit and get tan when it’s warm out, a small-talk topic that I whip out when I’m feeling awkward etc. Global warming and the climate crisis were thrown at me from various erratic science teachers in high school and was referred to as fictitious by my conservative parents. I was, all in all, detached from and oblivious to the environment and clueless of its problems. Since taking this course, I am repeatedly forced to look through several different lenses at the environment. Science perspectives, feminist perspectives, a United States Citizen perspective, a human living in this world perspective, all of which engaged me with nature and the environment in a new and interesting way.
All of these perspectives have also placed the land in a personal narrative for me. When our class read Living Down Stream, I saw just how much the land is involved in everyone’s story, and Cancerland further implanted me into direct connection with the land. In an idyllic world that was filled with rainbows and butterflies, the land would have a magical power to purify itself of all the hideous chemicals that us humans throw at it. With the connection drawn between chemicals, pesticides and toxic medicine and cancer, a disease that effects everyone’s life in some way or another, I can’t help but get mad at the land for its inability to protect us from these exposures. This is probably the only thing that I dislike about the land, which can easily be over looked because a self cleansing system is a lot to ask of an object, and because I love so much about it as a whole.
Ecofeminism as a subject and as a class makes me look at the land as a living, breathing entity that binds humans and more specifically women together through the fact that we all share it and we all interact with it on a daily basis. The whole idea of six degrees of separation works in a strange way through the land, I believe, because I do not know anyone in Africa or other distant lands, but I do have a connection to them through the land that we both share. Women in the United States and women in other countries and on different continents are all working together to protect the land from the damage that mankind is inflicting on it, and this mutual adoration and feelings of protection that is shared globally is something that I love most about the land.
My personal value of the land increased significantly once I started taking this class because I never fully thought about all that it produces for me. Up until this semester, I obviously knew that food came from farms and all that jazz, but the mechanics behind the growing of the food was a mystery to me. Now that I know about all the work that the land has to do and all of the damage that is done to it in order to give ME sustenance, my opinion of its value increased exponentially.
With all of my respect and love for the land that Ecofeminism taught me, I know that there is a lot to be done to protect it and I can no longer ignore the land and all the problems that it is facing.