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Date of Award


Document Type

Restricted Thesis: Campus only access

Degree Name

Master of Arts in English Composition



First Reader/Committee Chair

Henry, Holly


Jonathan Bates states, “William Wordsworth remains the founding father for a thinking of poetry in relation to place, to our dwelling upon the earth” (205). Although Bates only mentions Wordsworth, I will press the claim that although very similar, Samuel Taylor Coleridge does the same. Through their poetry, both represent their identity through their connection to nature, finally showing the importance of how identity relates to “place” and its experience. Coleridge and Wordsworth unintentionally introduced us to writing that we now study in the field of Ecocriticism, which allows us to recognize our place on planet Earth instead of thinking how Earth benefits us.

For my writing project, I will provide a brief overview of the Romantic era. I will be focusing on the influence of nature on romantic poets and how they unintentionally introduced us to the genre we know today as Ecocriticism. William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge introduce us to a type of nature writing genre that specifically depicts humankind’s relationship with nature. Garry Harrison states in his article, “Romanticism, Nature, Ecology” that “at the very core of [the] Romantic view of nature was what later generations would come to call an ecological perspective […] and an intense desire to restore man to a place of intimate intercourse with the vast organism that constitutes the earth” (1). Through Romantic poetry, specifically looking at Wordsworth and Coleridge, we are able to see the relationship with the “self” in nature. The Romantic era serves as a beginning milestone of the field of Ecocriticism, interpreting with literary texts, the importance of nature and conservation.