Gardens in Literature: Looking Back from an Anthropocentric World


  • Nüvid Şefika Alemdaroğlu Batman University


From  the famous poem The Garden by Andrew Marvell, to that of  Seamus Heaney’s  Digging, gardens have been depicted as idyllic places,  as in classical pastoral poetry and Renaissance poetry and symbolic of ideas about identity, the past and memory. In what is  now suggested by the scientists  as the appropriate term for the controversial  last geological period, some starting it with The Industrial Revolution and some dating it as early as the Agricultural Revolution and the Neolithic Age, “the anthropocene”, the human outlook on gardens and nature as a whole has to be reassessed. The globally catastrophic threat of the immanent extinction of humans as a species  loudly drawn attention to  by Slavoj Zizek in his 2012  text  Welcome to the Anthropocene, calls for a  further repositioning of the   human than  the ecocritical approaches up to now. In this light the whole world can be seen as Eden, the ‘Garden of Bliss’ about to be lost by humans who have  inextricably doomed themselves in capitalism.  This paper will look at the depiction of gardens in   various examples  of literature such as  the Epic of Gılgamesh, religious poems, Romantic  Poetry,  Bacon’s Essay on Gardens, Shakespeare’s plays and Lewis Carrol’s Alice in Wonderland within an anthropocentric  framework.




How to Cite

Alemdaroğlu, N. Şefika. (2018). Gardens in Literature: Looking Back from an Anthropocentric World. Journal of Narrative and Language Studies, 6(10), 87–100. Retrieved from