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Pierre Gascar: Romantische Ökologie und ökologisches Weltbild

Walter Wagner

Pages 439 - 457

Literary criticism has widely ignored the environmental discourse dominating Pierre Gascar’s works. The present article offers an ecocritical reading of his writings, trying to find out in how far this corpus is influenced by Romantic Ecology and where the latter is transcended by a modern scientifically and ethically informed approach to the natural environment. Romantic Ecology is speculative, positing the idea of cosmic holism. It considers nature to be an animated entity which the subject can communicate with. According to the Romantics, mankind lives in harmony with the natural environment, which is governed by homeostasis. They think humans to be integrated into the eternal cycle of life, decay, and renewal, thereby subverting the idea of death. These parameters are selectively adopted by the author and confronted with current ecological concepts and issues such as the web of life, sentience, interspecies communication, the ecological crisis and environmental ethics. Thus, Gascar’s writings are at a crossroads between Romantic myths of nature and contemporary ecologism.


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