5/9 DFLL Faculty Colloquium – Li-Hsin Hsu



NTU DFLL Faculty Colloquium

Title: Emily Dickinson’s Environmental Gothicism

Speaker: Prof. Li-hsin Hsu許立欣教授 (National Chengchi University)

Moderator: Prof. Lilith Acadia王莉思助理教授 (National Taiwan University)

Time: 15:30~17:00, Thursday, May 9, 2024

Venue: 1F DFLL Conference Room, Gallery of University History, NTU (臺大校史館1樓外文系會議室)



Abstract: The talk looks at Emily Dickinson’s poetry about the nonhuman world, in particular relation to EcoGothic and Timothy Morton’s Dark Ecology, rethinking the role fear plays in her poems about Nature, and how ecological awareness in Dickinson resonates with what Morton calls “ecognosis” — a riddle-like, serpentine form of ecological knowledge that sees dark thought as a necessary path to lead one to a deeper level of ecological understanding (from dark-depressing and dark-uncanny to dark-sweet). By exploring fear as an essential part of one’s ecological relations in Dickinson, and her conceptual resonance with Morton, the essay highlights the dark ecological epistemology in Dickinson in her attempt to assess an alternative, potentially more sustainable mode of ecological thinking, with a shifting aesthetics from a gothicized sense of human-nonhuman alienation towards an eco-poetics of human-nonhuman co-strangeness, and an ecognostic understanding of multi-species co-existence.


Bio: Li-Hsin Hsu is Professor and Chair of English at National Chengchi University, Taiwan. Her research interests include Emily Dickinson studies, Romanticism, Ecocriticism, and Modern Taiwan Poetry. She serves on the Emily Dickinson International Society (EDIS) board and will host the EDIS international conference in Taiwan in 2025 on Dickinson and Ecologies. She is also currently the organizer of the “Taiwan in the Anthropocene II” research group, sponsored by the National Science and Technology Council in Taiwan.