Plants and Literature: Essays in Critical Plant Studies

Plants and Literature: Essays in Critical Plant Studies 710 IS LE Furman's status as a transplant is also reflected in the book's fascinat- ing concern with definitions of native and exotic. While we may think of Florida as a state thoroughly infiltrated by invasive exotics (Burmese pythons, Myna birds, Brazilian pepper trees, golfing tourists), Furman discovers that the status of some species remains uncertain, while others that are known transplants are now thoroughly naturalized. In his chapter on the spot-breasted oriole, a species introduced to south Florida from Mexico, Furman ultimately decides that this beautiful (and not particularly invasive) exotic is worthy of more respect than it receives. “It took a while, and several sightings,” he writes, “for me to question the prejudice among ‘serious’ birders against introduced species and to appreciate these birds on their own terms” (102). While Furman takes us on a few fishing trips and a few birding trips into the northern Everglades scrub, much of his attention is focused on the nature of his suburban neighborhood. Like other excel- lent environmental memoirists, such as Janisse Ray and John Price, Furman resists the call of the wild and instead casts down his bucket where he is. The result is a rewarding form of http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png ISLE: Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment Oxford University Press

Plants and Literature: Essays in Critical Plant Studies

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Publisher
Oxford University Press
Copyright
The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissionsoup.com
ISSN
1076-0962
eISSN
1759-1090
D.O.I.
10.1093/isle/isu114
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

710 IS LE Furman's status as a transplant is also reflected in the book's fascinat- ing concern with definitions of native and exotic. While we may think of Florida as a state thoroughly infiltrated by invasive exotics (Burmese pythons, Myna birds, Brazilian pepper trees, golfing tourists), Furman discovers that the status of some species remains uncertain, while others that are known transplants are now thoroughly naturalized. In his chapter on the spot-breasted oriole, a species introduced to south Florida from Mexico, Furman ultimately decides that this beautiful (and not particularly invasive) exotic is worthy of more respect than it receives. “It took a while, and several sightings,” he writes, “for me to question the prejudice among ‘serious’ birders against introduced species and to appreciate these birds on their own terms” (102). While Furman takes us on a few fishing trips and a few birding trips into the northern Everglades scrub, much of his attention is focused on the nature of his suburban neighborhood. Like other excel- lent environmental memoirists, such as Janisse Ray and John Price, Furman resists the call of the wild and instead casts down his bucket where he is. The result is a rewarding form of

Journal

ISLE: Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and EnvironmentOxford University Press

Published: Dec 1, 2014

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