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EcofeministPerspectiveon

发布时间:2021-05-08 人气:

本文摘要:ChapterOneIntroduction IanRussellMcEwan(1948—)wasbornonJune21,1948inAldershot,England,amilitaryfamily.Heisnotonlyoneofthemostfamouswriterssince1970sbutalsoascreenwriter,andwasadmiredas“themosttechnicallyaccomplishedofallmodernBritishwriter

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ChapterOneIntroduction   IanRussellMcEwan(1948—)wasbornonJune21,1948inAldershot,England,amilitaryfamily.Heisnotonlyoneofthemostfamouswriterssince1970sbutalsoascreenwriter,andwasadmiredas“themosttechnicallyaccomplishedofallmodernBritishwriter”.IanMcEwanstudiedattheUniversityofSussex,wherehereceivedadegreeofEnglishliteraturein1970.Atuniversityhedevelopedliteraryambitionsandwroteplays,adaptedaThomasMann’sshotstoryfortelevision.ThenreceivedhisM.A.degreeinEnglishliteratureattheUniversityofEastAnglia.In2008,TheTimesfeaturedhimontheirlistof“the50greatestBritishwriterssince1945”.   IanMcEwanisaprolificwriter.Hisworkshaveearnedhimworldwidecriticalacclaim.Since1975hepublishedtwovolumesofshortstories,FirstLove,LastRites(1975)andInbetweentheSheets(1978)andsevennovels——TheCementGarden(1978),TheComfortofStrangers(1981),TheChildinTime(1987),TheInnocent(1989),BlackDog(1992),EnduringLove(1997),Amsterdam(1998)andanovelforchildren,TheDaydreamer(1995).FirstLove,LastRiteswontheSomersetMaughamAward.TheComfortofStrangerswasshortlistedfortheBookerPrizein1981.TheChildinTime,aturningpointinMcEwan’swritingcareer,wontheWhitbreadNovelAwardin1987.BlackDogwasshortlistedfortheBookerPrizein1993,andAmsterdamwontheBookerPrizein1998.Moreover,AmsterdamawardedtheWHSmithLiteraryAward,theNationalBookCritics’CircleFictionAwardandLosAngelesTimesPrizeforfictionin2003,andtheSantiagoPrizefortheEuropeanNovelof2004.In2006,hewontheJamesTaitBlackMemorialPrizeforSaturday.IanMcEwanhasbeennamedtheReader’sDigestAuthoroftheYearfor2008,the2010PeggyV.HelmerichDistinguishedAuthorAward,andin2011hewasawardedtheJerusalemPrize.   Inaccordancewiththesubjectmatters,McEwan’swritingshavebeendiviedintotwoperiods.Worksduring1974to1981werefocusonviolence,incest,deathandtransvestitism,fromthatmomentonearnedhim“IanMacabre”(Mellors,1975:111).KiernanRyan,theauthorofIanMcEwan(Ryan,1994),summarizesthesecretofMcEwan’sappeallayinhisstylishmorbidity,intheelegantdetachmentwithwhichhechronicledactsofsexualabuse,sadistictormentandpureinsanity.AfterthepublicationofTheChildinTime,McEwan’swritingthemesandstylehaveundergoneagreatchange,manyfamousnovelswerepublished.MostcriticalresponsestoTheChildinTimenotethewayinwhichMcEwanhasbroadenedhisconcernsfromthehermeticallyandluridlypsychopathologicalworldoftheearlyfictiontoachieveanewmaturityinhisexaminationofsocialissuesandhisendorsementofthepossibilitiesofredemption.1.1Introductiontothenovels   IanMcEwanisregardedasthe“mostadmiredEnglishwriterofhisgeneration”.Hisearlynovelsandshortstoriesareusuallylabeledas“artofunease”or“literatureofshock”.FewcriticsevensaidthatasMcEwan’searlyworks’morbidsubjectmatters,itisnotworthytostudythem.Inlate1980s,McEwan’swritingsubjectshavechangedfromdarkandmacabrethemestoalargesphereofsocialandpoliticalissues.Nomatterinwhichwritingperiod,McEwanexpresseshisworryabouthumanbeings’imbalancedsocietyandenvironmentinmanyofhisnovelssoastoalertpeopletopayattentiontotherelationshipbetweenhumanandnature.   McEwan’sfirstnovelTheCementGardenpublishedin1978wasconsideredshockingandmorbid,itisarepresentativeof“literatureofshock”.Itapparentlyisanovelaboutchildren.Butchildreninthisnovelaretotallydifferentfromanyothernovels’characters,suchasDavidCopperfield(1850)orLordoftheFlies(1954).TheCementGardenshowsastrikingpictureoffourchildrenescapefromauthority,traditionalmoralandsocialstandardsaftertheirparents’death,thentheyslideintoanarchyandbehaveimmorally.Meanwhile,thisnovelisnotonlytalksaboutchildren’sindifferencetotraditionalsocialmorality,butalsoexpressesthedisruptionofecologicalbalance.CriticshavediscussedTheCementGardenfrommanyperspectivessinceitpublished.TheytendtoviewTheCementGardenwithamixtureoffascinationandslighthorror.PaulAbelmanintheSpectatordescribesthisnovelas“justaboutperfect”,andBlakeMorrisonintheTimesLiterarySupplementsuggeststhat“itshouldconsolidateIanMcEwan’sreputationasoneofthebestyoungwritersinBritaintoday”.   IanMcEwanisdeclaredasthe“themostcontroversialwritersoverthepast25years”becauseofheisinterestedinwritingdarkthemesandtheedgeofhumanexperiences.TheChildinTimeisoneofhislandmarkworks,itmarkedMcEwan’sincreasinglymaturewritingskills.Afteritspublication,thereceptionofTheChildinTimehasbeenquitemixed.Somecriticshavepraisedithighly.SuchasMartinintheSpectatorsaiditis“aseriousnovelwhichhasmanylevelsofintention,andprovidesmanysourcesofpleasure”and“McEwan’sbestyet”.Buttherewasoppositionhowever,somescholarslikeAnnanintheNewYorkReviewofBookssuggestedthat“TheChildinTimeisratherasillynovel”.TheChildinTimeisamuchmorecomplexstorythanMcEwan’searliernovels.Onthesurface,itisthestoryofabest-sellingauthorofnovelsforchildren,StephenLewis,themaincharacter,trytorecoverfromthelossofhisdaughterandretrievehismarriage.Infact,itisthestoryabouttime,dystopiaandthewayout.Meanwhile,McEwanshowshisecofeministthought,only“womanlytimes”canchangepatriarchy’scontrolofenvironmentandwomen.   McEwan’slatestworkSolar,publishedin2010,itdemonstratesthewriter’sconsiderationoverecologicalandfeminiecrisisandindicatesthattorespectnatureandfemaleandkeepspiritualharmonyistherightwaytogetoutofcorner.ItwasawardedtheBritishliteraryawardforcomicwriting,BollingerEverymanWodehousePrizein2010.ThisnovelbasedonthebackgroundofMarch2005,McEwan’stripwithothertwentyarts,scientistsandjournalists.ThisgroupofpeoplegatheredaboardashiplockedintheArcticicefortheclimatechange.ThetripplaysacrucialroleintermsofMcEwan’sreconsideringofenvironmentalism.Solarisasatirenovelaboutclimatechangeinshort.MichaelBeard,anignobleandall-too-humanprotagonist.HeisaNobel-winningphysicistwhosefamilylifeandcareerarebothchaotic.Inordertogetridoffamilyproblemsandgainmorefame,hecopieshisstudent’sacademicachievement.Withtheapplicationof“blackhumor”displaystheincreasingseriousecologicalproblemsandrelationsbetweenthesexes.   Inthethesis,TheCementGarden,TheChildinTimeandSolarwillbechosenforresearching.InTheCementGarden,steelskyscrapersareseenassymbolismofmodernity,alsocalledthecementage.TheprotagonistJack’sfamilyisseparatedfromnaturebysteelandcement,Jack’sfatherinthecementagechangesanddestroysnaturalenvironmentcasuallyashelike,Jackfather’secologicalunconsciousnessisexplored.Althoughfemaleinthisnovelhavethesamefateasnature,afterthedeathofJack’sfather,feminineconsciousnessisawaking.McEwan’secofeministthoughtwasshowninhisearlywritings,however,inTheChildinTime,thetransitionalwork,theredemptiveandvirtuespowersoffemininitywereexpressedobjectivelyanddirectly.Inthisnovel,McEwanattacksThatcherism,thegovernment’seconomicpolicieswhichdestroytheenvironmentofeconomicdevelopment,somedamageisirreparable.Ontheotherhand,theimageofnewwomencomefromtwoproblemfamiliesvividlyinthiswriting.Julie,awisewoman,Stephen’swife,shecandaretofacetherealityoftheirfive-year-olddaughter’sdisappearancethenhelpherselfoutofdifficulty.Inreverse,asaspokesmanforthepatriarchalsociety,masterofthefamily,Stephencouldnotevengooutofthepainofmissingdaughter,finallyhisfamilybreakdown.CharlesDarke,Stephen’sfriend,apolitician,attheheightofhiscareerheleftthecomfortablegovernmentjob,soldtheirmansioninthecitycenter,thenmovedtotheforestandlivedhappilyeverafter.AnewphysicistThelma,politicianCharles’wife,afterbacktotheforest,shetakescareofhimlikehismother.Inaddition,shehelpsStephenoutofthepainoflosingdaughter.Thesuperiorityofnewwomeninthisnovelwasshowncompletely.McEwan’secofeministthoughtalsoreflectedinhislatestnovelSolar,itisobviouslyseenfromthetitlethatthisnoveltalksaboutecologicalproblemagain.GregGarrardsaysthat“intheseveralnovelsfollowingTheChildinTime,environmentalproblemsappearasanotherpointofconcern”.InSolar,McEwancreatesaNobelPrizewinner,MichaelBeard,intheeyesofthepublic,Beardissupposedtobeamodelforeverybodyespeciallyforscientiststhe.Butinfact,Beardisanegoist.McEwandescribesBeardasahatefulliarandacheatingthief.Healwaysgivinglecturesabouthowtosavingenergyandprotectingtheearthinordertogetmoremoney.Withthepurposeofimprovinghisreputation,Beardstolenhisstudent’sresearchresult.Beardisagluttonous,lasciviousandirresponsiblepersonwithallbadhabitsduringdailylife.ItseemsironicthatBeard,asocialelitewhoisfullofhumanbeings’shortcomings,takesuptheimportantresponsibilityofsavingtheearth.InMcEwan’sopinion,heidentifiestheoriginofenvironmentalcrisisintheinteractionofcontingenthistoricalcircumstancesandtheuniversalpsychologicaltendenciesknown,forconvenience,as“humannature”.ThesethreenovelswerewritteninMcEwan’sdifferentwritingperiods,buttheircommoncriticismtopatriarchalsocietyandyearningforharmonyhappenstocoincidewithecofeministthought.ItisworthytoanalyzeIanMcEwan,amalenovelist’secofeministthought.Byanalyzingthethreenovelsfromtheperspectiveofecofeminism,McEwan’sdisgustforthepatriarchalandhuman-centeredsocietyisexplored.1.2LiteratureReview   ManyscholarsandcriticsalwayshavenotlikedMcEwan’snovels,butMcEwanstillhasalwaysbeentakenseriouslybythem.KiernanRyan,ProfessorofEnglishLanguageandLiterature,summarizes“thereceivedwisdom”aboutMcEwan’snovelsastheywere:“McEwanstartedouttheseventiesasawriterobsessedwiththeperverse,thegrotesque,themacabre.Buttowardsthecloseofthedecadehiswritingunderwentamarkedevolutionasaresultofhisincreasinginvolvementwithfeminismandthepeacemovement.”(Ryan,1994:34)StorieswithblackthemesbeforeareusefulbecausetheyestablishedMcEwanasayoungwriterofsomeimportanceandhedoesnotsimplybecomearight-thinking,socialprophetsincemid-1980s.EnglishscholarshipsystematicexaminationofMcEwan’sworksstartingintheearly1990s.EversincehisfirstcollectionofshortstoriesFirstLove,LastRitespublished,itarousedmuchcontroversy,fromthaton,McEwan’sreputationkeepsrising.   Sincethefirstfull-lengthnovelTheCementGardenpublished,criticstendtoviewitwithamixtureoffascinationandslighthorror.Itbecomesoneofthemostcontroversialnovelsofthe20th-century.DavidMalcolminUnderstandingIanMcEwananalysesMcEwan’swritingstyle,blackthemes,andnarrativetechniques.AlsotalksaboutMcEwan’sattitudetofemale,concernwithscienceandmoralstandard.(Malcolm,2002)Aboutthethemes,PeterChildspointsTheCementGardenisastoryaboutsocialconventions,culturalnorms,andthedivisionsbetweenthehumanandthealien,thenaturalandtheartificial.(Childs,2005:123)RandallStevensonthinksthatthechildreninthisnovelshownearlynoprogressaftertheirparents’deathandtheydonotgetmature.(Stevenson,1986)Thereislittleresearchaboutitinourcountry.ZhangHelongdiscusseschildren’ssexpsychologyinIanMcEwanandHisTheCementGardenandregardsitasthegenreofanti-growthnovel.(Zhang,2003)ShenXiaohong’sdoctoraldissertationEthicalPredicamentsinIanMcEwan’sMajorNovelsbasesonTheCementGarden,TheChildinTimeandAtonementthreenovels’distinctiveethicalpredicamentinordertorevealthecontinuityanddevelopmentinMcEwan’streatmentofethicalpredicaments(Shen,2010).WangLimin’s“TheEthicalWastelandinTheCementTimes:AnEthicalStudyonTheCementGarden”usesethicalapproachtoexploretheethicalproblemsexistinginthemodernEngland.(Wang,2008)ZhangMindoesaclosereadingofTheCementGardenin“AnAllegoryofModernity:InterpretationofIanMcEwan’sTheCementGarden”onthebasisofallegorytheory.AconclusionisdrawnthatTheCementGardenisnot“arevoltingbook”assomecriticsclaimed.(Zhang,2008)AsMcEwanoncesaidthathewasinfluencedbyFreud.HuYinan’s“PervertedPsychesandTragicGrowthofChildreninTheCementGarden”discusseschildren’stragicgrowthistheoutcomeofmanyfactorsandtheadolescenceproblemsinthenovelarenotjustfictional.(Hu,2010)YueMaosheng’s“AnInterpretationofPsychoanalysisofTheCementGarden”pointsTheCementGardenisnotamorbidnovelwhichdoesnothavevaluebutisundertheFreud’spsychoanalysisinstruction.(Yue,2011)   AsMcEwanisgraduallybecomeamemberofthedominanttrendsin1980sto1990sfiction,TheChildinTimein1987thusconsideredas“aturningpointinMcEwan’scareer”.(Head,2007)IthasamuchmorecomplexstorymaterialthanMcEwan’searliernovels.EllenPiferinDemonorDoll:ImagesoftheChildinContemporaryWritingandCulturebelievesthatwhatStephenexperiencesisawaytomaturity.(Pifer,2000)MalcolmdiscussesTheChildinTimefromthepointoftime,change,dystopiaandthewayout.(Malcolm,2002)Intermsoftime,JackSlay’s“VandalizingTime:IanMcEwan’sTheChildinTime”(1994)describestheinternallinkbetweenchildrenandtime.(Slay,1994)PaulEdwards’“Time,Romanticism,ModernismandModerationinIanMcEwan’sTheChildinTime”treatsthenovelas“literarycritiqueofBritishsocialandpoliticalreality”.(Edwards,1995:41)Incontrasttotheabroadscholars,thereisnotmuchresearchaboutMcEwan’sworksuntil1998inChina.LongJiangpublished“TheChildWithinandMagicTime”toilluminateitisanimportantturningpointinMcEwan’swritingcareer.Healsoarguesthattimeistheessenceoflifeandpeopleshouldfindtheirinnerchildto“fendofftheuglinessandalienationofthecontemporaryadultuniverse”.(Long,2005:70,76)“InSearchofTrueSelf”writtenbyZhengCaixiaanalysisTheChildinTimefromthepointofpsychologicaltimeandphysicaltime.(Zheng,2007)XinYingying’s“AnInterpretationoftheTwoProtagonists’ViewsonTimeinTheChildinTime”usesHenriBergson’stheoryofduréefortheanalysisoftimeinTheChildinTime.Ittriestoillustratethedeterminativeinfluenceofdifferentsensesoftimeontheformationofthetwoprotagonists’differentpersonalitiesandcoursesoflife.(Xin,2009)   BeginningwithTheChildinTime,McEwanhastransformedtotouchuponthepresentsocialandpoliticalissues.Solarhascaughttheattentionofcriticsandscholarsbeforeitpublished.McEwanisreadinghisunfinishedworkSolarattheHayFestival,saysthathemayhavefoundawayaroundtheformalobstaclestowritinganovelaboutclimatechange.GregGarradpredictedthatifitissuccessfulasaworkoffiction,itmaywellprovokeafundamentalshiftinecocriticalassumptions.(Garrad,2009)ClarkAlexcomparedSolartoMartinAmis’ThePregnantWidow,concludedthatSolarwasa“FlickeringwithGoldenAura”work.(Alex,2010)BritishcommentatorJackKerridgeinterviewedMcEwan,thenpointedthatSolarwasaworkwithspecialeyeofMcEwantoseeandportraytheprogressivematurityofhumanbeing.(Kerridge,2010)InOneIanMcEwan’sClimaticChangeRelatedComedy,WilliamSutcliffsaysSolarisaverysuccessfulwork,muchlikelytobeMcEwan’sbestone.(Sutcliff,2010.)ChinesescholarZhouYipublishesanarticleConfrontationbetweenNatureandHumanNature—InterpretationforSolarwiththePerspectivesofLiteraryEthicstoanalysisSolarfromtheperspectiveofsexualethics,ecologicalethicsandscientificandtechnologicalethics.(Zhou,2011:102-109)Zhou’sanotherarticleConcernforEcology,ThinkingaboutHumanNature—ReviewforIanMcEwan’sNewWorkSolardeeplydiscussestheworkthroughtheviewofecologicalethicsundertheglobalwarmingbackground.(Zhou,2011:45-47)ShangBiwu’sEroticism,ScientificTechnologyandPsychology—ReviewforIanMcEwan’sNewWorkSolaranalysesitfromscientifictechnology,emotionandethicsthreeperspectives.(Shang,2010:21-23)WangReiinherLiberationforFemale,RescuingEcology—InterpretationforIanMcEwan’sNewWorkSolartalksaboutthefemaleimageinpatriarchalsociety.(Wang,2012:25-28)   Throughouttheacademia’sdiscussiononMcEwan,hiswritingcanbedividedintothreeperiod:fromthe70stotheearly80shemostlywroteshortstories.Bothofthemconcernaboutgrowth,family,ethic,environmentandfemaleproblems.TheCementGarden,asMcEwan’sfirstfull-lengthnovelisamasterpieceduringthisperiod.Inthemidandlate80stothelate90shiswritingunderwentamarkedevolutionasaresultofhisincreasinginvolvementwithfeminismandthepeacemovement.(Malcolm,4)Storiesinthisperiodnotonlypayattentiontothegrowthbutalsofocusonsexualrelationship,politicalissuesandclimatecrisis.TheChildinTimewritteninthisperiodisconsideredasawatershedinhiscareer.Since2001McEwan’smeditationonhumannatureandecologyarereflected,especiallyinhisnewworkSolar.   ItattemptstoidentifythesubversionofpatriarchyandanthropocentrisminMcEwan’sthreerepresentativenovelsofeachwritingperiod,toexplorehisconsistentecofeministconcern,itcouldbeusedasanewstartingpointforinterpretingnovelsandunderstandingMcEwan.1.3IntroductiontoEcofeminism   Ecofeminismisapracticalmovementwhichconvergenceofwomenmovementandwesternenvironmentmovement.RachelCarson,anAmericanmarinebiologist,ecologistandconservationistpublishedSilentSpringin1962,showedherattentiontotheenvironmentalproblemsandpromotedthewesternenvironmentalmovement.Theterm“ecofeminism”wasfirstcoinedbytheFrenchfeministFrancoiseD’Eaubonne,inherLeFeminismeouLaMort(FeminismorDeath)in1974.D’Eaubonnearguesthattherewasapotentialconnectionbetweennatureandwomenwhichcomesfromtheirsharedhistoryofoppressionbythepatriarchalsociety.D’Eaubonnewasregardedastheoriginatorofecofeminism.ThentheconceptofecofeminismwasdevelopedbyYnestraKing,theorganizerof“WomenandLivesinEarth:ACongressofEcofeminismin1980s”.EcofeminismisamulticulturalperspectiveaccordingtothemainecofeministKarenJ.Warren,itcanbediviedintoseveralschools.Butthecommonpointofallkindsofecofeministsistherecognitionoftherelationshipbetweenthedominationofnatureandthedominationoffemale,thenputanendtothepatriarchyandanthropocentrismwhichcausetheexploitationofnatureandtheoppressionoffemale.Theliberationofwomen,thesolutionofenvironmentalcrisesandfightingagainsttheoppressionareecofeminists’ultimategoals.   Natureandwomenarecloselyrelatedandbothofthemarecontrolledbymen.AnAmericanecofeministCarolynMerchantsarguesinTheDeathofNature:Women,Ecology,andtheScientificRevolution(1990)thattheexplorationofnatureandtheoppressiononfemalecanbeinterpretedasatwinruleunderthepatriarchalsociety.Thepatriarchalvalueistherootcauseofnatureandwomen’ssubordinateposition.Asaliterarycriticism,ecofeminismpaysmuchattentiontotherelationshipbetweennatureandfemalepresentedinliteraryworks.Itflourishedinthelate1970sandmadeitpresenceinliterarystudiesinthe1990s.Itadoptsthemethodsofecologicalcriticismandfeministcriticismtostudytherelationshipbetweenhumanandnaturefromgenderedpointofview.PatrickMurphy,ecofeministliterarycriticismuses“ecofeminismasagroundforcritiquingalltheliteraturethatonereads.Forliterarycriticsinparticularthiswouldmeanreevaluatingthemajorworksandtexts,andcallingadialoguebetweencriticalevaluationsbasedonhumanisticcriteria.Thiswouldrequire,forinstance,reevaluatethepoeticofthepastoral,whichtendstobebasedonanidealizationwithit.”(Murphy,1995:183)GaardandMurphyworkedtogethertowriteabooknamedEcofeministLiteraryCriticismwhichisthefirstcollectionofecofeministliterarycriticism.Accordingtothemecofeministliterarycriticismshouldinvolvereadingtextsthroughlensofecofeministtheoryandpracticeandaskingquestionslike:“whatpreviouslyunnoticedelementsofaliterarytextaremadevisibleorevenforegrounded,whenonereadsfromanecofeministperspective?Canthisperspectivetellliterarycriticsanythingnewaboutatextintermsofthetraditionalelementsofstyleandstructure,metaphorandnarrative,formandcontent?Howmightanecofeministperspectiveenhanceexplorationsofconnectionsanddifferencesamongcharactersinatext—betweenhumanandanimals,betweencultureandnature,andacrosshumandifferencesofrace,class,genderandsexualorientation—connectionsanddifferencesthataffectourrelationshipwithnatureandwitheachother?”(Gaard,Murphy,1998:7)Itwouldfurtherexploresnatureandwomen’ssymbolicassociationanddevaluationintexts.   Literatureandliterarycriticismcannotbeseparatedfromeathother,theyarecomplementaryexist.Ecofeministliterarycriticismhasenrichedthemeaningoftheliteraryworksandalsohasbroadenedtheperspectiveforliterarystudy,especiallyonsomeclassicalworksbefore,soastofindnumerousliteraryworkswerewrittenwithecofeministconsciousness.ChapterTwoEcofeminisminTheCementGarden   Inthepatriarchysociety,natureandwomenarealwaysbecomethevictimsofmen.Ecofeministconsiderhumanbeings,notonlymenbutalsowomen,arepartofthenaturalworldandmaintainacloseandharmoniousrelationshipwithit.Theyareoneandthesamething,inaddition,influenceeachotherdeeply.Patriarchyistheoriginalrootforthedominationofnatureandwomen.InTheCementGarden,IanMcEwanshowshisattentionontheoppressednatureandwomen,expresseshisdisgusttopatriarchalsociety.Inhisview,patriarchyistheoriginalrootforthedominationofnatureandwomen,peopleandnature’smutualcareisthewaytosolvethisdilemma.2.1Men’sdominationofnatureandwomen   Asweallknow,womenarenaturallycloserwithnature.Womenandnaturehavethesimilarphysicalfunctionswhicharereproductionandcreation.Womenhavethedutytorearandbeartheoffspring,andnaturesatisfiesallthecreatures’needsastheylike.Theirsamedestinyleadsuptothecloserelationshipbetweenwomenandnature.Inliteraryworks,natureandwomenarealwaysconnectedandcomparedtoeachother.Ecofeministsensuretheinnatepotentialconnectionbetweennatureandwomen,inwhichwomenaremoresensitivetofindthemselvesasonepartofnature.What’smore,womeninthepatriarchalsocietyhavethesamepatheticfatewithnature.Bothofthemareconsideredtobeothersorinferiortomale.   TheCementGardendisplaysmanyecofeminismproblemsrelatedtoman.InTheCementGarden,McEwandoesnotintroducemuchaboutthestory’sbackgroundasusual.JustsimplydescribesJack,theprotagonist,andhisfamilyliveinanemptystreetthroughoutthewildnessandnoneighbour.ThenovelnamedTheCementGarden,thefertilegardenisaparadiseforflowersandplantsaccordingtothecommonsense.ButthemalecharacterssuchasJackandhisfatherinthisnovelwouldliketobuildacementgardenanddestroytheecologicalenvironment,men’secologicalunconsciousnessisshown.Natureandwomeninthisnovelhavethesamefate.Thedeepconnectionbetweenthemareecofeminist’smainconcern.McEwanalsoproposesafundamentalquestionfromtheperspcetiveofhumanrelationshipwithnature,“howoughtwetolive”?ItispossibletoseeMcEwan’sattitudetonatureandwomen:humanbeingsshouldhavetorespectandprotectnatureandwomenratherthandespoilthem.2.1.1Controlofnature   Asnatureandwomen’svictimimagesinpatriarchalsociety,SusanGriffin,anecofeministauthor,inherbookWomenandNature:TheRoaringInsiderHerwrites“wearethebirds,theflowers,thebutterflies,therabbits,themilkcows;wearethecaterpillars;wearetheleavesofivyandthebranchesofmorningglory;wearethewomenandthenature.Buthesayshecannothearus”.(Griffin,1978:1-2)Ecofeministshavedescribedanumberofconnectionsbetweentheoppressionsofwomenandofnaturethatareimportanttounderstandingwhytheenvironmentisafeministissue,and,conversely,whyfeministissuescanbeaddressesintermsofenvironmentalconcerns.NatureinTheCementGardenalsocontrolledbythedominators.   InTheCementGarden,peopleliveinacastle-likehousestrandsamonggrimhigh-risesthroughoutinadesertedplacewhereallthebuildingsnearithavebeenpulleddownforthemodernizationofsociety.JustasJackmentions:“ourhousehadoncestoodinastreetfullofhouses.Nowitstoodonemptylandwherestingingnettlesweregrowingroundtorncorrugatedtin.Theotherhouseswereknockeddownforamotorwaytheyhadneverbuilt.”(McEwan,1978:28)Withthedevelopmentofindustrializationandurbanmodernization,theenvironmentandsocialenvironmentaredestroyedincreasinglyserious.ThedominatorofJack’sfamily,hisfather,is“afrail,irascibleandobsessivemanwithyellowishhandsandface”.(McEwan,1978:13)Hefirmlybelievesthatmancanconquernatureandmakeitservemanforever.Heisthekinginhisfamilyandwouldliketobuildacementgardenforhimself.Inhiscementgarden,“hehadconstructedratherthancultivatedhisgardenaccordingtoplanshesometimesspreadoutonthekitchentableintheeveningswhilewepeeredoverhisshoulder.Hejustplantshisbestlovetulips,hedidnotlikebushedorivyorroses”.(McEwan,1978:19)ItisridiculousthatthereasonwhyJack’sfatherconstructedagardenisnotmakinghishousefulloflifeandspringintheair,butmakingitlifeless,justlikeapoolofstagnantwater.Afterhisfirstheartattackhecouldnotcontinuetodesigngarden,thenheplanestobuildaplatformsurroundthehousesoastoescapefromtheoutsideworld.Hedeprivesplant’sauthorityofgrowingup.ContrarytoAmericanecologistandenvironmentalistAldoLeopold’s“allthingsinthebiospherehaveanequalrighttoliveandblossomandtoreachtheirownindividualformsofunfoldingandself-realizationwithinthelargerself-realization”(DevallandGeorgeSessions,1985:67).Theplatforminthisnovelisalsoasymbolofmale’sbondageofthefamilyinpatriarchalsociety.Thereisnoflowersincementgardenbuttheoverrunningweeds.NatureshakesoffthefettersofmaleafterJackfather’sillness,“weedspushedupthroughthecracksinthepavingstones.Partoftherockerycollapsedandthelittleponddriedup.ThedancingPanfellonitssideandbrokeintwo,andnothingwassaid.It’snature’suniquewaytoretaliateagainstman”.(McEwan,1978:21)   Thefatherdonothingathomeexceptcallstheshots,notonlymotherbutalsochildrendonotlikeandrespecthim.Atthebeginningofthisnovel,Jackeventreatshisfather’sdeathasa“littlestory”.Asanothermalecharacterinthisnovel,Jackalsoshowshiscontrolofnatureanddamagetotheenvironmentfromhissubconsciousbehaviour.Whenmixingconcretewithhisfather,Jackfeelsateasewithhimforthefirsttime.ThelargeareaofconcreteroundthehouseappealsJackbecausehecanplayfootballonitandseehelicopterslandingthere.Jackalsoconsiders“mixingconcreteandspreadingitoveraleveledgardenwasafascinatingviolation”.(McEwan:1978:21)Moreover,Hehasaproclivitytoviolenceonnature,whenhefindsasledgehammerfromrubbleofneighbour’shouse,hammeringtheconcretepathingardenmadlymakeshimfeelexciting.Inarainyday,Jackstepsonafrogthenbringsaflatstonedownonthesmallgreenheadcruelly.TheodoreRoszaksaysinhisbook“manyoftheoldestritualareactsofpropitiationofferedtoasometimesfierceandpunishingdivinity,anEarthwhocanbeenangrymotheraswellasabountifulone”,itsuggeststhatourhumanbeings’ancestorsfeltnotonlysurprisebutalsorevereatnatureandtreatedthemselvesasnature’schildren.ButJackandhisfatherdonotrespectandlovetheirmothernature.Humanbeings’lackofeco-consciousnesshadexistedforalongtime.AsRalphMetznersaid,“acorefeatureoftheEuro-Americanpsycheisadissociativesplitbetweenspiritandnature.Insomeversions,spiritisnotonlyseparatedfromnature,butincompatibleandopposed.Thehumanspiritualisthenalwaysregardedassuperiortotheanimalnature.”(Metzner:1995:65)Andhumanbeings“donotseemtohear,orsee,orfeel(our)mother’spresenceoflivingplanetanddeaftoitsvoicesandstories.”(Metzner:1995:159)Ecologicalunconsciousisthestudyofhumanbeings’commonpsychologicalcharacteristics,thesameasCarlGustavJung’scollectiveunconscious.Human’sdisregardtotheenvironmentisnottheiroriginalcharacter,buttheirsuppressionontheenvironment.2.1.2Controlofwomen   YnestraKingfocusesonpatriarchalcultureandthebaseofresistanceinwomen’sidentityinTheEcofeministImperative:“acultureagainstnatureisacultureagainstwomen.Weknowwemustgetoutfromunderthefeetofmenastheygoabouttheirprojectsofviolence.Inpursuingtheseprojectsmendenyanddominatebothwomenandnature.Itistimetoreconstituteourcultureinthenameofthatnature,andofpeaceandfreedom,anditiswomenwhocanshowtheway.Wehavetobethevoiceofinvisible,ofnaturewhocannotspeakforherselfinthepoliticalarenasofoursociety.”(King,1993:78)   Therelationshipbetweenmaleandfemaleisquitestraininthisnovel.Asaspokesmanofthepatriarchalsociety,fatherathomeisimperiousanddominated.Atthebeginningofthenovel,theparentsarguesoverthebagsofcement.MotherusesherangryvoicetoaskJack’sfathersendthewholecementbackbecausetheyarelackofmoney.Fatherholdshispipe,asymbolofmasculinity,anduseshispipeagainsthiswife.He“usedapenknifetoscrapeblackshardsfromthebowlodhispipeontothefoodhehadbarelytouched.Heknewhowtousehispipeagainsther”.(McEwan,1978:15)HedoesnotconsiderTomwouldsoonbeneedingnewclothesforstartingatschool,sosendingthecementbackisimpossible.Besides,heisverystrictwithTom,“alwaysgoingonathiminaneedlingsortofway.HeusedMotheragainstTommuchasheusedhispipeagainsther”(McEwan,1978:17)becausehedoesnotacceptTombehavinglikeababy.Asa“semi-invalid”(McEwan,1978:17),hemustdominatehiswifesoastomaintainhisprestige.ForJulie,Jack’seldersister,fathernevertakesherseriously.Julieisgoodatrunningandholdsthelocalunder-eighteenrecordsforthe100-and220-yardsprint.Fathersays“itwasdaftinagirl,runningfast”(McEwan,1978:25),andherefusestocometoasportsmeetingwithfamily.   Jack’scontroloverfemaleverifieshe“goestoextremesofbehaviorofmasculinity”(Childs,2005:39).Heandhisfatherareboththetypicalrepresentativesofmasculinity.AlthoughJackdoesnotlikeandrespecthisfatherasmentionedabove,hehasthesameideastohisfatherinsomerespects,aboutthecementforexample.(Jacktalkslikehisfatherthroughanimaginarypipe.)Jackandhisfather’sopiniononcontrollingnatureanddominatingfemalepresenttheirtraditionalmalecharacteristics.Whenmotherwasalive,shesacrificedallthetimeandenergytodohouseworkandtakecareofchildren,seldomcommunicatedwithothers.Attheageofeight,Jackbackhomepretendingtobeill.Sheisgladtohavesomeoneathomeaccompanyherduringtheday.ButJackalwaysavoidedbeingalonewithherincaseshespoketohim.InSue’sview,Jackneverunderstandsanythingabouttheirmotherandalwayshorribletomother.AfterthedeathofJack’smother,hefells“asenseofadventureandfreedom”.(McEwan,1978:79)Jackdoesnotcryforher,onthecontrary,hecriesforhedoesnotgetthekeywhichsymbolizestheauthorityinfamily.Hewantstograbthekeyoftheirmother’sbedroom,onlythencanshowhispositionofdomination.Hefeelscheatedbyhismotherbecause“motherhadgonewithoutexplainingtoJuliewhatshehadtoldme”.(McEwan,1978:61)Inchildren’sdiscussionabouthowtodealwithmother’sdeadbody,Jackfeelsgoodandenjoyshimself,proudtosayhisplan.Itmakeshimthinkof“thegentlemencriminalsinfilmswhodiscussedtheperfectmurderwithelegantdetachment”.(McEwan,1978:69)Jackbehaveshistraditionalgenderconceptthatmenplaytheimportantrolesinthesocietymeanwhilewomenareconfinedtothefamilydailychores,andwomenshouldobediencetomen.Whenthechildrenarepreparingburyingtheirmotherbytheconcrete,Jack“feltentitledtodotheshovelingandmixing,butJuliehadtheshovelandhadalreadymadeupapileofsand”.(McEwan,1978:70)Forhethinksthatmixingcementwellismen’sexclusivebehaviour.Severalweeksaftermother’sdeath,Jackfeelsastheonlyrealmaleinfamily,heshouldactasafather,modelshimselfonhisdeadfathertocontrolandmanageothermembersoffamily.HetriestointerferingtherelationshipbetweenJulieandherboyfriendasheisJulie’sbrotherthathehastherighttoaskquestionsaboutherboyfriend.Jackisgladtobealeader,controllingpeopleandmakingthemobediencefulfillmentJack’seagertomasculinepower.2.2Mildresistersinpatriarchalsociety   Ecofeminismcontainsmanydifferentbranchesandtheories,however,theyarecloselyrelatedbyonepoint,womenhaveaspecialconnectiontothenaturethroughtheirdailyinteractionswithitandtheyhavethesamerootcauseofbeingdominatedbyman.Inthisnovel,natureandwomenwereoppressedbyJackandhisfather.Butasawriterwhocaresaboutwomen’spositionandenvironmentalcrisis,McEwanalsodescribesnature’srevengeonhumanforbrokennaturalbalanceandanewwomanimagetoshowtheauthor’secofeminismthought.2.2.1Therevengeofnature   Withthedevelopmentofscienceandtherapidexpansionofurbanizationandindustrializationinsociety,environmentpollutionhasbecomeworseandworsethatcausesglobalwarming.VandanaShivapointsoutthat“scienceisamasculineandpatriarchalprojectwhichnecessarilyentailedthesubjugationofbothnatureandwomen.”(Shiva,1996:268)Ecofeminismcriticizestheoverdevelopmentwesternscienceandtechnologycivilizationandpatriarchalideology.   Naturealwaysbecomethevictimofmenanddestroyedseriouslyinpatriarchalsociety.AlltheecofeministsstronglyagainstthiskindofbehaviourandMcEwanisnoexception.TheCementGardentakesplaceintheindustrialage,housesnearJack’sfamilyallhavebeentorndownwithoutabladeofgrassformodernconstructions.Thenature’srevengeonmanstarts.Thenovelhappensinsummer,duetotheimpactofglobalwarming,itismuchhotterthanthepreviousyears.Jackalwayscomplainsitistoohotthanusual,“itwasmid-July,onlyaweekbeforethesummerholidaysbegan,andithadbeenhoteverydayforsixweeks”.(McEwan,1978:50)Influencedbythehightemperature,childrenhermeticallysealthemselvesinhomemoreandmoreisolationandalienation.“Wedidnotevensitoutsidebecausethewindwasblowingafine,blackdustfromthedirectionofthetowerblocksandthemainroadsbehindthem.Andevenwhileitwashot,thesunneverquitebrokethroughahigh,yellowishcloud.”(McEwan,1978:79)Stayinginhomemakeschildrenbad-temperedandoftentrivialbickering.Childrenquarrelwitheachotheraboutarain.ThequarrelmakessistersangrybutJackfeelscalmandgladtomakethemangrier.HeevenwantstosmackSuehardonthebackofherneck.   Atthebeginningofthenovel,fatherconstructshisgardenaccordingtoplans.NatureresisttoJack’sfatherforbreakingthenaturalorderratherthancultivatesthegarden.Oncefatherbringshometwogoldfishinaplasticbag,birdseatsthemquickly.Inordertoprotectthelandfromgrowingflowers,Jack’sfatherintendstobuildahighwallroundhisspecialworldbeforehisfirstheartattack.Afterhisfirstheartattack,theconstructedgardenbegantodeclineand“weedspushedupthroughthecracksinthepavingstones”,(McEwan,1978:21)itshowsnature’sstrongvitality.Jack’sfathernevergivesuptheconquestofnaturetilldeath.Whenhedied,hewas“lyingfacedownontheground,hisheadrestingonthenewlyspreadconcrete”.(McEwan,1978:23)Anambulancecame,hewascoveredwitharedblanket.Theclourredmeansvictory.“Red”impliesthevictoryofthenatureinthewarofbetweenhumanandnature.2.2.2Therebellionofwomen   Jack’smotherisatypicaltraditionalwomaninpatriarchalsociety.Heridentitywasdeprived,shealwaysenclosedherselfathomeandsheisaninvisiblewomaninthesociety.ButheroldestdaughterJulieisdifferent,sheisamaverickgirl.Thelocalunder-eighteenrecordsforthe100-and220-yardsprint.Infamily,fathertreatsJulieasafoolandnevertakesherseriously.Meanwhile,Juliedoesnotlistenandobeytothedominatoroftheirfamily.Sheisastrong-mindedperson,sheknowshowtoarrangeherowntimeanddressesupwellaccordingtoherwishes.Unliketheirpoormotherwhodevotesallthetimeandenergytofamily.Intheeveningsshestaysathometowashhairandironthepleatsinhernavyblueschoolskirt.Atschool,sheisoneofahandfulfearlessgirls“whoworestarchedwhitepetticoatsbeneaththeirskirtstofillthemoutandmakethemswirlwhentheyturnedontheirheel”.(McEwan,1978:25)Shealsohassomeboyfriendsatschoolbutsheneverletthemgetnearher.Shedoesnotlikeothertraditionalfemalecanbemanipulatedbymeneasily.Shehasherowngroup,andmakesfriendswiththemostrebellions,theoneswithreputations.InJack’sview,Juliesometimes“atthefarendofacorridorsurroundedbyasmallnoisygroup.ButJulieherselfgavelittleaway;shedominatedhergroupandheightenedherreputation”.(McEwan,1978:26)Generallyspeaking,onlymalecanbethedominatorandcontrollerinpatriarchalsociety.BothofJulieandherfatheraredominatorsinthisnovel,Juliegetsmoreself-identityandrespectthanthefailedcontroller,father,duestoher“disruptive,intimidatingquietness”.(McEwan,1978:26)   Aftermother’sillness,Julieinchargesoffamily’ssupperandbedtime.Traditionalwomenathomecanonlyobey.Julieseesitdifferently,sheisagirlofactionanddoesnottolerateanysloppiness.Shedoesnotdohouseworkallbyherselflikemother,instead,shecallsforJackandSuetodotogether.TomdoesnotlikeJulieplaystheroleofmotherbecausesheneverobedienttoTom.ItmakesTomafraidofherandJackfeels“shewassoremotefromus,quiet,certainofherauthority”.(McEwan,1978:39)Julieisgoodatoperatingfamilywellinherownway,andenjoysorderingothermembersofthefamilygradually.2.3Mutualcare   InTheCementGarden,McEwandescribesapicturethatinordertodevelopsocialmodernization,humanbeingsdestroynaturedayafterday,finallygetnaturalpunishmentandretaliation.Andinpatriarchalsociety,womenareoverwhelmedbythepowerofthemasculinity,therelationshipbetweenhusbandandwife,parentsandchildren,sistersandbrothersaredistorted.ForMcEwan,thekeypointtosolvedifficultiesinthisnovelisnatureandhumanbeings,femaleandmale’smutualcare.Thatistosay,theharmonyrelationshipsbetweenwomanandman,natureandhumanbeings.Nature,femaleandmalearetheorganiccomponentsandtheyareequal.Malehavenorighttocontrolandconquerfemaleandnature.Thesameasecofeminists’viewpoint,themutualrelationshipoftheinternalorganiccomponentsinthisunityisquiteimportant.   Patriarchyisseenastheimportantrootformale’soppressiononfemalebothphysicallyandpsychologically.Ecofeminismaimsatsubvertingthepatriarchysoastomakefemale’sliberation.Mutualunderstandingandcommunicationwitheachotherarethekeytoshakeoffthefettersofmaleideologyandrebuildaharmoniousrelationshipbetweenfemaleandmale.Maleshouldnotattempttomanageorcontrolfemaleastheyareequaltoeachother.Inthisnovel,therelationshipbetweenfamilyarestrangebecauseoftheirlackofcommunication.Facingthepatriarchaldiscriminationandoppression,McEwanshapesabraveandfashionablenewfemaleimage,Julie.ByJulie’stypicalleadertemperament,shewinsherself-identitiesandrespect.Womenandnaturehavethesamestatusinpatriarchalsociety.Duetothedualisticthinking,natureistheobjectofmale’sexploitationtosatisfyhumanbeings’needs.People’sexcessiveexploitationanddestructionofnaturefordevelopment,finallygotnature’sretaliationandpunishment.Accordingtotheecofeminists,forthepurposeofmakingnatureandpeopleharmoniouslydevelopment,itisnecessaryforpeopletotreatnatureasthemotherofworldcreaturesandrespectfornature.Mutualinterdependenceisthebestwaytomaintaintherelationshipbetweennatureandhumanbeings.ChapterThreeEcofeminisminTheChildinTime   TheChildinTimewontheWhitbreadNovelAwardin1987.Atthisperiod,muchmorethinkingaboutlove,environmentandinterpersonalrelationshiparereflectedinMcEwan’sworks.Ashisthirdnovel,TheChildinTimeisfulloflove,warmandhopeandendsupwiththeunityoffamily.DifferentfromhisfirstnovelTheCementGardenendswiththedestructionoffamily,thenovelgotmuchattentionforfourreasonsasGregGarrardpointedout:itscrystallizationofnumerousstylisticvirtuesinMcEwan’searliernovelsandshortstoriesinamoresubstantialandsophisticatednarrative;itspresentationofadystopianfutureasanextensionofThatcherism;itssympatheticexplorationofthe“newphysics”intermsofa“feminization”ofscience;anditschallengetopatriarchalmasculinity.(Garrard,2009)Onthesurface,TheChildinTimerevolvesaroundamissing-girlKateandthebreakdownofamarriage,infact,itismuchmorethanthat.BylinkingThatcherismandpatriarchy’sdamageonenvironmentandwomeninTheChildinTime,McEwanshowshisconcernaboutthestatusofenvironmentalcrisisandfemale.Infaceofsuchoppression,McEwandoesnotmeantobuildawomen-centeredsociety,heputsforwardasolutioninthisnovel:maleshouldlearnfromfemaleasmale’sfatalityofamasculinity,bytheirharmoniouscoexistencealltheproblemswillbesolved.3.1Intellectualwomeninpatriarchalsociety   Itisknowntoall,inthelongcourseofhumanbeings’historymaleistheheadoffamilyandtheyhavetheauthorityovercommunityandsociety.Whilefemaleisconsideredtobesubordinateandinferiortothemale,theroleoffemaleinpatriarchalsocietyiscenteredaroundthefamily.Itisconventionalthatfemale’sstatusislowerthanmale.SebastianGroesinIanMcEwan:ContemporaryCriticalPerspectivespointsthat“McEwan’salignmentwiththefeministmovementintheseventiesandeightiesledtohisbeingco-optedandderidedasthemalefeminist”.(Groes,2009:1)McEwanalsoexplainedinGroes’bookthathe“developedaromanticnotionthatifthespiritofwomenwasliberated,theworldwouldbehealed”whichisthesameasecofeminists’notion.McEwansaysfranklythatfemalecharactersinhisnovel“becametherepositoryofallthegoodnessthatmenfellshortof”.(Groes,2009:6)FemalecharactersinTheChildinTimearethetypicalrepresentativesofthenewwomen,bothofthethemhavesteadyjobs,stableincomeandindep

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endentmind.Allpossessingstrongself-consciousnessandrelativelyindependentpersonality.McEwanmainlydescribestwofemalesinthisnovel,ThelmaandJulie,whohavethecouragetobreakthesocialconventionandchallengingtothesocietyofmaleauthorityandtraditionalrepresentationsofwomen.3.1.1UtopianEcofeminist——Thelma   VirginiaWoolf,aforerunneroffeministliteratureusedtosaythehistoryofBritain’sisnotthehistoryofwomen,butthehistoryofmen.Femalehaslifebuthasnohistory.Inthepatriarchalsociety,traditionalwomendonothavetheirownsocialoccupationsstatus,womencanonlydofortheirfamilies,husbandsandchildrenobedientlyandsilently.Thiskindofwomenoftenbecalled“angleinthehouse”.Onthecontrary,femalecharactersinMcEwan’spenaredifferent.Completelyoppositetothetraditional“angleinthehouse”.   IanMcEwanhaswrotethelibrettoforMichaelBerkeley’soratorioorShallWeDie?in1983.Inthisintroduction,McEwansayspeoplecoulddisplaytwodifferentworldoutlooks,theNewtonianandthatofthenewphysics,thosetwoworld-viewsrepresentthelawofmaleandthelawoffemale.“IntheNewtonianuniverse,thereisobjectivity;itsimpartialobserverislogicalandimagineshimselftobeall-seeingandinvisible....TheobserverintheEinsteinianuniversebelievesherselftobepartofthenatureshestudies,partofitsconstantflux;herownconsciousnessandthesurroundingworldpervadeeachotherandareinterdependent...Shehasnoillusionsofheromniscience,andyetherpowerislimitlessbecauseitdoesnotresideinheralone.”(McEwan,1983:19)ItshowsMcEwan’sacceptanceandrespecttofemale.Femalecharacters’existenceinTheChildinTimeistoillustratethegreatsuperiorityof“newphysics”.“Newphysics”alsonamedlawsofwomenorfeminity.Thelmaisaself-independentwomanwhohasasteadyjobandincome,alsohasherstatusandpower.SheisanoversixtylecturerinphysicsatBirkbeckCollegewithawell-knownandrespectedthesiscompletedonthenatureoftime,oneoftherarefemalephysicistsinsociety,McEwansaidinthisnovel“forthreecenturiesgenerationsofexperts,moralists,socialscientists,doctors—mostlymen”.(McEwan,1987:89-90)Asafemalewhoseworkingenvironmentisfullofmaleanddominatedbymale’spower,itisakindofdemonstrationanddeclarationtopatriarchalsociety.Thelmaalsohasherownhobby,science.Shetreatsscienceasherownchild,“forwhomsheholdsoutgreatandpassionatehopesandinwhomshewishestoinstillgentlermannersandasweeterdisposition”.(McEwan,1987:45)Sheisanhonorabletraditionofwomentheoreticalphysicists,thoughshemodestlyclaimsthat“shehasnotmadeasinglediscovery,notevenaninsignificantone”.(McEwan,1987:45)Thelmawantstogiveupteachingintheuniversityandmoveouttothecountrysidetodosomeacademicresearch,thenwriteabookaboutherfavoritetopic,newphysics.Traditionalwoman’sdesiretobooksandknowledgewasconsideredasabehaviorofself-indulgenceorachairwarmer.WhileThelmabelievesthat“quantummechanicswouldfeminizephysics,allscience,makeitsofter,lessarrogantlydetached,morereceptivetoparticipatingintheworlditwantedtodescribe.”(McEwan,1987:45)Thelma’sattitudetoscienceisexactlythesameasMcEwan’sfaith“menwilldestroytheworldandwomenwillsave”.(Malcolm,2002:186)   Inthemale-dominatedsociety,themostimportantcareerofwomenisdressingandmakingthemselvesbeautifulsoastopleasetheirhusbands.Influencedbythepatriarchalideologymenalwayslookdownonwomen,meanwhilewomenusedtoaccustomtotheirsituation,graduallybecomeself-neglectedyieldtosocialconvention.Asawife,ThelmaistwelveyearsolderthanherhusbandDarke,ayoungmillionaireinthekitschmusicbusiness.ThelmamaynotbethebestwifeforDarke,someonejokedthatsheismorelikehismother.Thelmaisnotawomanwhomakeupherselfinordertoappealhusband.Shealwayspluckshereyebrows,highcheekbonesmakeherlooklivelyandcheerful.“Greyhairwasgatheredinamessybunsecuredwithanantiquecombwhichsheclaimsitisthesuitablehairstyleforwomenphysicistswhichmakesherexudesallairofwisdom,competenceandstability.”(McEwan,1987:48)FemalephysicistThelmaistheembodimentofwisdom,theoutstandingintelligenceandrationalityglittersbetweenthelinesaretheperformanceoffemale’ssuperiority.   Traditionalwomenafflictsbypatriarchyalwaysdonothavetheconsciousnessoffemalesubject.Femalesubjectconsciousnessisoriginatedfromthesocialgenderawareness,itreferstowomen’sconsciousnessofstatus,role,personalvalueandinfluenceasthesubjectinsociety.Thecorefactorofitistoemphasizefemale’sindependentexistence.Thelmainlifeisanabsolutelyindependentwoman.Notonlyhasownidentityandspecialtraitsbutalsohasthefemininepowerinfamilyandsociety.ForherhusbandDarke,sheisnotjustapieceofeyecandy.Inotherpeople’seyes,sheismorethanasuccessfulpolitician’swife,sheislikeherhusband’sfriendandleaderwhohelphimsolvingproblemsandoutofhisdilemma.DuringDarkerunninghisrecordcompany,“ThelmatalkedherhusbandintostartingaliterarybookclubandthesuccessofthisbroughthimtothedustyfirmofGott’s,whichwithintwoyearswasprofitableforthefirsttimeinaquarterofacentury.”(McEwan,1987:31)AtthepeakofDarke’scareer,hisfatalityofmasculinitybringsout.Heisnearingamentalbreakdownandinafragilestate,heandThelmatogetherdeterminetogiveupthepoliticiancareer.ThelmaknowsDarkeverywell,sheindicatestoStephen“Charleshasaninnerlife.Infact,morethananinnerlife—aninnerobsession,aseparateworld.You’llhavetotakethatontrust.Mostofthetimehedeniesit’sthere,butit’swithhimallthetime,itconsumeshim,itmakeshimwhatheis.WhatCharlesdesires,ifthat’stheworld—whatheneedsisquiteatoddswithwhathedoes,whathe’sbeendoing.It’sthecontradictionsthatmakehimsofrantic,soimpatientaboutsuccess.Thismove,atleastasfarasheisconcerned,hastodowithresolvingthese.”Darke’seagertomakeuphisabsentchildhoodwasinfluencedbyhischildhoodexperience.“Darkehadnopoliticalconvictions,onlymanagerialskillandgreatambition”.(McEwan,1987:38)TohelpDarke,Thelmasaystotheirfriend“wemadesomewell-considereddecisions.Charlesisgivinguphiscareer,andI’mresigning.We’resellingthehouseandmovingintothecottage”.(McEwan,1987:48)Facingtheunexpectedturnofevents,Thelmadoesnotfeelingdizzyassometraditionalwomen,incontrast,sheuseshermagicalfemininequantummagictosolvethefamilycrisis.Itconfirms“Charleswasher(Thelma)difficultchild”.(McEwan,1987:42)DeparturefromtheadministrationtothecountrysideDarkegraduallydegradationasachild.Thelmaismorethanawife,butlikeamothercaringforhim.Thelma’stypicalfemale’spowerofredemptionisshown.   Livinginthecountryside,ThelmaandMothergetonwellwitheachother.WhenStephenvisitsthecouple,she’sgladtotalktohim“howtheouteredgesofthewoodsothattherewasnovisiblebarrierbetweenthetwo,andhowshehadbeengrowingwildflowersfortheirseeds,whichsheplannedtopreserveforwhatshecalledthegenepool.”(McEwan,1987:119)Thelmaenjoysherforestlifeverymuchandinagoodmood.“Weeksofcountryair,longafternoonstendinghergarden,andthechancetoworkatwhatshewantedhadmadehereuphoric.”(McEwan,1987:133)Thelmahassomeotherfriendsbesideshusbandandnature,suchasStephenandStephen’swifeJulie.Differentfromthetraditional“angelinthehouse”whohasnofriends,Thelmahasherowncircleoffriendsandtalkswiththemnotonlyaboutlifebutalsoinfluencesthemtoknowsometheoreticalphysicsknowledge.Sheiswillingtohelpfriendsintroubleandherfriendsarethesame.AngelaRogersays“Thelmawasaninterestingcharacterinthatparadoxicallysheembodiessciencetogetherwiththefemaleprincipleofholism,andwecanreadherasanantidotetotheharshscientificmaleprinciple”.(Roger,1996:31)3.1.2Integratedpersonalities——Julie   Thefunctionoffictionshouldbemirroringhumanbeings’life.Andasawriter,thebestwaytodeliverhisideasiswriting.Beginningin1980s,McEwan’snovelscontainmuchmoreconfidentinvestmentingenderincreasingly,asmalewritercanbereimaginedinrelationtobothtimeandsocialspace.TheChildinTimeisanovelwhichchallengetothepatriarchalsystem.McEwanembodieshisconcernoffemaleandnatureinfictioncreation.HisspecialconcerncanbefeltthroughthedescriptionofnewwomeninTheChildinTime.NewwomeninthisnovelareneitherthesameaswhatBarbaraWeltercalledTrueWomanhood,bywhich“thenewidealofwomanhoodhadessentiallyfourparts,fourcharacteristicsanygoodandproperyoungwomanshouldcultivate:piety,purity,domesticity,andsubmissiveness.”(Welter,1966:151)NorsimilartothetrueliberatedwomeninSimonedeBeauvoir’sTheSecondSex,economicallyandspirituallyindependent.   Inthisnovel,McEwanrarelyreferstoStephen’swife,Julie,andherprivatecircleoffriends.ItdoesnotmeantheauthordeprivedJulie’sutterancerightonpurpose,onthereverse,McEwandeliverstheadvantageofwomeninthepatriarchalsocietythroughStephen’smouth.Julie’sfemaleintegratedpersonalitieswhicharecapabletoaccommodatingtheunexpectedchangesisfullydisplayed.Aswellasmaleisnotbornwithmasculine,Beauvoirisimplyingthatfemaleisnotbornfemininebutissociallyconstructedtobeafeminineinordertofitintotheirplaceastheoppressedor“secondsex”withourpatriarchalsociety.Thenewwomenpossessbothfeminineandmasculinecharacters,theyarenotonlybreeding,tendingandeasy-goingbutalsoaggressive,governingandforesighted.Likeallnewwomenwhopursueindependenceandself-fulfillment,JuliehasherowncareerasThelma.SheisaviolinistteachesattheGuildhall,andformsastringquarterwiththreefriends.Theyaregettingbookingsandhaveonesmall,favorablenoticeinanationalnewspaper.Fromthat,itiseasytoseeJuliehasahighsocialpositionaswellashighincome.Asawife,Julieisaquietandwatchfulwoman,alsosheis“adevotedmother”,“passionatelyattachedtoherchild”,and“alovingparent”infamilylife.“Theyhadbeenmarriedforsixyears,atimeofslow,fineadjustmentstothejostlingprinciplesofphysicalpleasure,domesticduty,andthenecessityofsolitude”.(McEwan,1987:9)TheirgreatpartnershipandstrongmarriagebreakuptilltheirdaughterKate’ssuddenandmysteriousdisappearance.WhenJuliefindsthereissomethingwrongfromStephen’sface,“beforeshescrambleduprightinthebedandmadeanoiseofincredulity,alittleyeldonaharshintakeofbreath.Foramomentexplanationswereneitherpossiblenornecessary.”(McEwan,1987:19)StephenbeginsdesperatelylookingfortheirmissingdaughteraroundLondon.“Hewenteverywherealone,settingouteachdayshortlyafterthelatewinterdawn”.AssoonasJulieheardthemessage,shestayedathomeforafewdaysand“hadspecialleavefromthecollege”.WhenStephenwasawayforsearching“shewassittinginthearmchairinthebedroom,facingthecoldfireplace”.(McEwan,1987:21)Atfirstthecouple“hadclungtooneanother,sharingdazedrhetoricalquestions,awakeinbedallnight”.Timepassed,Julieacceptstherealitygradually,thenshepackedKate’sclothesandtoysoneafternoon.Juliebravelyacceptstheabsenceoftheirdaughter.ButitmakesStephenangry,hethinkswhatJuliehasdoneisakindof“feminineself-destructiveness,awillfuldefeatism”and“therewasnomutualconsolation,notouching,nolove”.(McEwan,1987:22)OnelateFebruaryafternoon,Julieoutoftheshadowofdaughter’smissingandlefthometostartanewlifeinaretreatintheChilterns.Stephenisstillthere,inthesamehouseforalmostthreeyearsthen“hewroteanaffectionate,undemandingpostcardtoJulie,tellingherthathehadthoughtaboutheronKate’sbirthdayandthat,ifandwhenshethoughtthetimewasright,sheshouldgetintouch.”(McEwan,1987:179)AftertheirmeetingJulietoldStephenthatherleavingisnotakindofescapebutfacingindependently:“IcameoutheretofaceuptolosingKate.Itwasmytask,mywork,ifyoulike,moreimportanttomethanourmarriage,ormymusic.IfIdidn’tfaceit,IthoughtIcouldgounder.Thereweresomebad,baddayswhenIwantedtodie.”(McEwan,1987:254)Severalyearsago,StephenthinksJulie“tookhiseffortstobeatypicallymasculineevasion,anattempttomaskfeelingsbehinddisplaysofcompetenceandorganizationandphysicaleffort”.(McEwan,1987:22)Finally,headmittedthatthewisdomofJuliethatshe“hadtogoonloving,but...Hadtostopdesiringher”.(McEwan,1987:255)Stephenrealizesthelimitationofhisearlyopiniononfemalewhichhe“believed,orthoughtheoughttobelieve,thatmenandwomenwere,beyondalltheobviousphysicaldifferences,essentiallythesame,henowsuspectedthatoneoftheirmanydistinguishingfeatureswaspreciselytheirattitudestochange.Pastacertainage,menfrozeintoplace”.(McEwan,1987:59)Stephengraduallychangeshistraditionalpatriarchalideologyandacceptsfemale’swisdomtosolvetheirproblemtogether.KiernanRyanpointsoutthatTheChildinTimeistellinganewkindofstoryaboutanewkindofexperience,theliberationofmenfrommasculinity,anditsuffersfromallthestumblingandembarrassmentonemightexpectofsuchapioneeringventure.(Ryan,1994:51)3.2Degenerationofenvironmentinpatriarchalsociety   InWritingMasculinities,BenKnightsregardsTheChildinTimeasa“greenparable...inwhichmasculinity,fathering,andgenderrelationsfigureprominently”.(Knights,1999:208)Ecofeministscallsthepatriarchalvalue,socialinstitutionandpatriarchyaretherootcausesofenvironmentalandfemalecrisis.Inthedevelopmentperiodofsocialindustrialization,humanbeingscannotattendtoprotectingtheenvironmentwhichleadsuptoenvironmentproblemssuchasclimatechange,globalwarmingandsoon.3.2.1Degenerationofnature   Garrardsays“intheseveralnovelsfollowingTheChildinTime,environmentalproblemsappearasanotherpointofconcern”.(Garrard,2009:1)Withthedevelopmentofindustrialsociety,environmentalissuesaremorerecognizedbecauseofthepollutionanddestructionofecosystemresultingfromeconomicdevelopmentandtechnologicaladvances.McEwanbringsclimatechangeintothisnovelalsoshowshisconcernonecologicalandenvironmentalproblems.Theyellandrevoltofangrynaturetothegreedyhumanbeingsisexpressedbytheunprecedentedtemperature,theweatherundergoesviolentextremesfromhotanddroughttoincessantheavyraininthisnovel.   Inthebeginningofthenovel,itislateMayaboutnine-thirtyinthemorning,thetemperatureisnearly“nudgingtheeighties”.(McEwan,1987:1)ItiswellknownthatspringisthebestseasontogoespeciallyinMay.Stephen’sfathercomplainsaboutthehightemperaturetohisson“Idon’trememberahottersummerthanthisinseventy-fouryears.It’shot.Infact,I’dsayitwastoohot.”(McEwan,1987:97)Thehighesttemperaturehadpassedone-hundred-degreeFahrenheit,evenhighertemperaturesareexpected.However,“theparchedmonthsofwhatwastoturnouttobethelastdecentsummerofthetwentieth”.(McEwan,1987:5)Mostdramatically,extremeweatherconditionsoccurwithglobalwarminginthisnovel.“TherainscameatlastinlateSeptember,deliveredbygalesthatstrippedmosttreesbareinlessthanaweek.Leavescloggedthedrains,certainstreetsbecamenavigablerivers,oldcoupleswerehelpedoutofbasementflatsbypolicemeninwaders”.Stormyweatherisinconvenientbutbecausethehottemperaturebefore“ageneralfeelingofcrisisandexcitementatleastontelevision”.Forthischangeableclimateweatherexpertscomeoutintheopentodeclarethat“whytherewasnoautumn,whyitwassummerlastweek,winterthis”.Expertsblameallclimateissueson“theencroachingiceage,themeltingicecaps,theozonelayerdepletedbyfluorocarbons,thesuninitsdeaththroes”.Thegovernmenttreatssuchweathernotbadas“nooneyetknewhowtostoptherain”andwhatgovernmenthasdonewereseenbythemasses.Naturaldisastersseemlikepunishmentforhumanity’sdestructionofnature.“Itrainedeverydayforfiftydays”.(McEwan,1987:142-143)Accordingtotheweatherforecast“beforethefirstsignsofspring,theywouldhavetoendureheavysnowfalls”.(McEwan,1987:194)Owingtothehumanactives,toomuchcuttingoftheforests,theuncultivatedland,okasandbeechesinStephen’sstudentlife“oncetodiscoverthetreesefficientlyfelled,thelandplowed,andtheestuaryspannedbyamotorwaybridge”.(McEwan,1987:8)Emissionsofgreenhousegasesprobablyareatleasepartlytoblameforthechangeableclimate.Inthisnovel,thethreatofnuclearwarhauntsthedystopianfutureBritain,“intheUnitedStatesthisactwasblamedontheprevaricationsofadocilepresident,whonowsilencedhiscriticsbybringinghiscountry’snuclearforcestotheirmostadvancedstateofreadiness.TheRussiansdidlikewise.Nuclearsubmarinesslidquietlytotheirallottedfiringpoints,silosgapedopen,missilesbristledinthehotshrubberyofruralOxfordshireandinthebirchforestsoftheCarpathians”.(McEwan,1987:35)Theexcessiveuseofnuclearfuelalsodestroystheecologicalenvironment.Kindsofenvironmentproblemsmayleaduptoglobalwarming.3.2.2Degenerationofsociety   TheChildinTimewaswrittenin1987,duringthetimeoftheThatcherism’sheyday.Thenoveltakesplaceinadystopiannearfutureattheendofthe20thcentury.Thatcherismdescribestheconvictionpolitics,economicandsocialpolicystyleoftheBritishConservativepoliticianMargretThatcher,whowasleaderofherpartyfrom1975to1990.IthasalsobeenusedbysometodescribetheideologyandwiderpoliticalculturaloftheBritishgovernmentwhileThatcherwasPrimeMinisterbetweenMay1979andNovember1990.Thatcherincreasesinterestratestoslowthegrowthofthemoneysupply,claimstopromotelowinflation,thesmallstateandfreemarketsthroughtightcontrolofthemoneysupply,privatizationandconstrainsonthelabormovementandintroducescashlimitsonpublicspending,andreducesexpenditureonsocialservicessuchaseducationandhousing.Thedismantlingofmanysocialwelfareprogramsleadstothedeteriorationofbothnatureandthesociety.McEwanhaswrittenananti-ThatcheritefilmnamedThePloughman’sLunchin1983anddirectedbyRichardEyre.ThefilmlooksatthemediaworldinMargaretThatcher’sBritainduringthetimeoftheFalklandsWar.InTheChildinTime,McEwandeftlycapturesthesubtlechangesinsocialphenomenonduetothedegradationofenvironmentcausedbyThatcherism.   Ecofeminismendeavorstodestroytheossifiedpatriarchalandanthropocentrismdualsystemandsetupanewpatternofrelationshipofcoexistencebetweenmanandwoman,manandnature.McEwanalsoregardspatriarchalandanthropocentrismarethecausesofmen’sdifficultiesandthedegenerationofnatureandsocietyinTheChildinTime.“Insofarasitidentifiespatriarchalvalues,institutions,andidentitiesastherootcausesofenvironmentalcrisis,itmightbemoreaccuratetodescribethenovelasanecofeministparable”.(Knights,1999:209)Inordertoimprovethesociety’seconomicdevelopment,thegovernmentinthisnovelvigorouslypromoteindustrializationandurbanization.Asaresultofthedevelopment,peoplearelivingabetterlifeapparently.Influencedbytheanthropocentrism,ambitionofpursingmoneyandmaterialbecomingsoambitiouswithallkindsofincreasedyearningtofuture.Everythinghasitsadvantagesaswellasdisadvantages.Withthecontinuousdevelopmentofeconomy,thewelfarestatecollapsed,agroupoflicensedbeggarswalkingdownthestreets.Thestrategyisthe“artofbadgovernmentwastoseverthelinebetweenpublicpolicyandintimatefeeling,theinstinctforwhatwasright”.(McEwan,1987:3)Thegovernmentinordertoobtainmorebenefits,schoolshavebeenprivatized.Schoolsweresoldtoprivateinvestors,“theattendancerequirementsweresoontobereduced”,(McEwan,1987:26)directlytotherearetwothirdsofeleven-years-oldsininner-cityschools.Monoculturesofpineandwheatdominateadegradedlandscapeinwhichonlytinypocketsareprivilegedtoresemble“whatwasgenerallyacceptedastheEnglishcountryside”.(McEwan,1987:101)Greedy,rigidThatcheriterationalizationhasleftnoroomfornewts,birdsong,oreven,asatraindrivertellsStephen,abeautifullyconstructedVictoriantraintunnel:“It’stoorational,myfriend.That’stheproblem.Here’sacathedralinthedark.What’sthepointofthat?Closeitdown.Buildamotorway.Butthere’snoheartinmotorways.Youwon’tseekidsonbridgestakingcarnumbers,willyou”.(McEwan,1987:209)Notonlythechangeableclimatebutalsothedegenerationofsocietyareboththerevengeonhumanbeingfromnatureforpeople’sdamagetotheenvironment.3.3Motherhoodandnature   Attheverybeginningoftheprogressofindustrialcivilization,man’sdesiretoconquerandcontrolisgraduallyincreasing.Ecologicalcrisisisseriousbecomeevenmoreviolent.McEwandiscussesthethreatofnuclearwarandchallengestheideaofmasculinityinorShallWeDie?TheChildinTimeisafarmorecomplexworkofartthanorShallWeDie?,andyetitsunderlyingassumption—itsphilosophicalplot,ifyoulike—islikewisethatonly“womanlytimes”cansavebothnatureandhumanity.(Garrard,2009:698)McEwaninTheChildinTimeportraysthehumanandnaturaldisasterbecauseman’sfatalfaultofmasculinityandanthropocentrism,itshowsMcEwan’sinneranxietyandunease.ItresonatemoststronglywiththemainideaoforShallWeDie?,toembracewomanlytimesofshallwedie?KiernanRyanspeakshighlyofthenovelthatit“istellinganewkindofstoryaboutanewkindofexperience,theliberationofmenfrommasculinity,andsuffersfromallthestumblingsandembarrassmentsonemightexpectofsuchapioneeringventure”.(Ryan,1994:51)McEwanpointsthatthetrueharmoniousintheworldisbreakingdownthemale-centeredideologyfirst,thenliberationtheoppressedwoman.However,itdoesnotmeantoformafemale-centeredsocietytoreplacethemale-centeredsocietyHarmoniouscoexistenceistheproperwayoutofman’sdelimma.Ecofeministsdoesnotlookfor“agender-basedqualityoffemininitytoreplacemasculinitywhichwouldonlyinvertthepatriarchalvaluesuponwhichexploitativehierarchiesandbased”.(Madsen,2000:126)ForMcEwan,thekeypointtobuildaharmoniousrelationshipbetweenhumanandnatureistheacceptanceofwomanliness.JulieinthisnovelisabletoaccommodateunexpectedchangesandaccidentsbecauseofherintegratedpersonalitiesandtriestochangeStephen’sdisadvantagesofmasculinity.NewphysicistThelmaindicatesfemininesciencetocome,“thecleverboywasonhiswaytobecomingthewisewoman”.(McEwan,1987:120)ChapterFourEcofeminisminSolar   InMarch2005,IanMcEwanandothertwentyscientists,artistsandjournalistsgatheredtogethertoaboardashipwhichlockedintheArcticiceforaninterdisciplinaryexplorationonclimatechange.ThoseexplorerscameandwentinthespecialmadeArcticgear,atfirstallwaswell,severaldayslaterthenecessityforeachoneselfishlytograbwhateverwastohand.ThisexperiencewillprovetohavebeenpivotalintermsofMcEwan’songoingrethinkingofhowtoprotecttheenvironment.ItbecomesamotivationofwritingSolar,anovelaboutclimatechange.Nevertheless,Solarisnotasimplenovelaboutclimatechange,italsoreferstothecomplicatedrelationsbetweenbothsexesintherapiddevelopmentofscienceandcivilizationsociety.VandanaShivasuggests“(scienceis)amasculineandpatriarchalprojectwhichnecessarilyentailedthesubjugationofbothnatureandwomen”.(Shiva,1996:268)Theanthropocentricvalueharmstherelationshipbetweenmenandwomenaswellasmenandnature.Focusingonhumannaturemaythebestwaytocoordinatetherelationshipbetweenhumanbeingsandnature.McEwaninthisnoveldoesnotpaymuchattentiontodescribetheoppressednature,hewantstoshowhumanbeings’,especiallythetalents,scientists’absurdwaytosavenatureafterknowingtheconsequenceoftakingnaturalresourcescasually.Solarhascaughttheattentionofbothcriticsandscholarssinceitspublication.WilliaminFinancialTimesassertsthatSolaris“aworktremendouslywell-done,itmightbethebestoneamongtheworksofIanMcEwan”.(William,2010)Thedeterioratingrelationshipsinthisnovelbetweenhumanbeingsandnatureaswellasmanandwomanpointthefigureatanthropocentricandandrocentrismvalues.Justthesameasecofeminists’principle.4.1Natureandwomenasvictimsofpatriarchalsociety   Ecofeministsbelievethatwomenarenaturallycloserwithnature.Theyhavethesimilarphysicalfunctions:reproductionandcreation.Thesimilarpositionleadsthemtothesimilardestinyandtherelationshipbetweenwomenandnatureisparticularclose.RosemaryRadfordRuethersayswomeninpatriarchalsocietiesarethesymbolicrepositoriesforallthatshouldbeignoredorcutoutofhumanlife,especiallynature.InNewWomanNewEarthshewrites“sincewomeninWesternculturehavebeentraditionallyidentifiedwithnature,andnature,inturn,hasbeenseenasanobjectofdominationallybyman,itwouldbeseenalmostatruismthatthementalitythatregardedthatnaturalenvironmentasanobjectofdominationdrewuponimageryandattitudesbasedonmaledominationonwomen...Sexismandecologicaldestructivenessarerelatedinthesymbolicpatternsofthepatriarchalconsciousness...Theytakeintensivesocioeconomicforminmodernindustrialsociety”.(Ruether,1975:186,196)4.1.1Socialelites’lustfornature   Withthespeedydevelopmentofthecivilizationandscientificrevolution,natureisregardedastheothernesswhichhasnoauthoritytospeakandistreatedastobeconquered.Itissaidthatbecauseoftheappearanceofscientificrevolution,thenotion“naturepossessesthecenter”lostitsauthoritybefore.InSolar,theover-consumptionofcoalandpetrolinindustrializedsocietycausetheglobalwarmingandclimatechangedirectly.TheprotagonistMichaelBeard,afifty-threeyearsoldphysicistwhowontheNobleprizefor“Beard-EinsteinSynthesis”twentyyearsago.Now,Beardlosthisinterestinphysicsandhaddonenoseriousscienceinyears,hehadnothingbeyondhisConflation,orhishalfofConflation.GluttonyandalcoholismareBeard’swholelife.Facingtheglobalwarming,“theBlairgovernmentwishedtobe,orappeartobe,practicallyratherthanmerelyrhetoricallyengagedwithclimatechange”(McEwan,2010:19).SothegovernmentsetuptheNationalCenterforRenewableEnergy.Atthesametime,Beardislookingforanofficialrolewithastipendattached.Severallong-runningsinecureshadrecentlycometoanend,andhisincomeisneversufficient.BeardassumestheCenter’sfirstheadwhileaseniorcivilservantnamedJockBrabydoestherealwork.Brabyisinlineforaknighthood.Brabyteam’sfirsttaskistoassistthegovernmenttocomplete“tapthegeniusofBritishpeoplebyinvitingthemtosubmittheirownclean-energyideasanddrawings.Thenation’sinventorsaremostlymaleasMcEwanwrites“itwasalwaysahe...”(McEwan,2010:19)Allpeople’sinventionsarevariantsontheperpetual-motionmachine.Brabythinksitiswasteoftimebutcomplaintforhisambitions.   Thisnewgovernmentresearchcenteraimsatenvironmentalprotection,it’sadministrativebuildingscontainasbestoswhichisasourceofenvironmentalpollutionbuteffectiveinacousticperformanceanditcontaincarcinogenthatdoharmtopeople’shealth.Noneofthosescientistswouldliketodosomeresearchontheclimatechangefromheart.FullyunfoldsMcEwan’ssatiricaltechniques.TheCenter’sfirstresearchprojectcomesfromBeard’scausalproposalbecausehewasworriedabouthiswifeatthattime.“Inanoff-the-cuffwayhehadproposedrightatthestartthatitwouldbeeasiertoprocuremorefundsifhecouldclaimfortheCenterasingleeye-catchingprojectthatwouldbecomprehensibletothetaxpayerandthemedia”.(McEwan,2010:27)SotheWUDU,WindturbineforUrbanDomesticUsehadbeenlaunched.Itmaysolvethepowerproblems.ByinstallingtheWUDUontherooftoptogenerateenoughpowertodeclinepeople’selectricitybill.However,becauseofthelimitedconditionsinthecityandBeard’slackingoftechnology,herealizestheWUDUhasnoresearchvalueatall,butBrabyiskeenonthisforhisfame.   Thenovelalsoreferstotherisksposedbyexcessiveemissionofcarbondioxide.“Thelasttenyearsofthetwentiethcenturyhadbeenthewarmestten,orwasitnine,onrecord...ThetemperatureriseassociatedwithadoublingofCO2”.(McEwan,2010:41)Theexcessiveemissionofcarbondioxideleadstogreenhouseeffect,climateisbecomingchangeableandsensitiveasresults.TomAldous,oneofBeard’spostdocwhohasbeendevelopingrevolutionaryplansforsolarpower.Aldoussays“theplanetwasindanger”,(McEwan,2010:28)overuseofcoalandoilwillruinpeople,andhewantstorescuetheplanetwithBeardandhisteam.ButtheChiefisnotanexpertinthefieldofsolarenergy.   Familyisinasbigamessascareer.MichaelBeard’sfifthmarriageisgoingtoendbecauseofhiswifePatricehadanaffairwithabuilderTarpinpublicly,inanactofrevengeonBeard’sadulterous.Tryingtogetawayfromhome,Beardcallsit“headquartersofhismisery”,heacceptsaninvitationtotheNorthPole.ItisavisittotheArcticpolarwithtwentyartistsandscientistsforinvestigationofclimatechange.AnItalian“internationalrenown”chefwillbeinattendance,andifitisnecessaryaguidewithhigh-caliberriflewillshotpredatorypolarbears.Asforthedischargeofcarbondioxide,it“wouldbeoffsetbyplantingthreethousandtreesinVenezuelaassoonasasitecouldbeidentifiedandlocalofficialsbribed.”(McEwan,2010:53)(PeopleintheCentersaysBeardwillgototheNorthPoletoseeglobalwarmingforhimself.)Jesusisoneofthetwentyclimate-changeartistsandscientistsfromMajorca,afamousicesculptorandhisspecialityispenguins.BeardspeaksironicallythatJesus’professionmaybedifficulttopursueinBalearic,ahotcountry.McEwanthroughBeard’smouthtosuggestthateveniftheGodJesusissubjecttotheclimaticcondition.TheelitesdonotrealizethiswhileBeard,themostindifferenttoclimatefindsit.Artistsassumesthatsculpture,poetry,dance,abstractmusicaalandconceptualartareart’shighestforms,theycould“inspirethepublictotakethought,takeaction,ordemanditofothers”.(McEwan,2010:90)Beardwassurprisedbytheirblindandarrogantassumption.Beingattackedbyapolebear,people’santhropocentrismshowedvividly.Thoseelitescallforprotectiononenvironmentandanimals,ontheotherhandtheytreatthemasathreat.   McEwanhassaidbefore,humannatureisthekeypointtosolveenvironmentalandhumanbeings’crisis.ThebootroomintheEightyDegreesNorthSeminarisaproperwaytoreflecthumannature.Firstdayeverythingisingoodorder,fromtheseconddaythedisorderappeared,fourdayslater,“finiteresources,equallyshared”wasinaruins.Humanbeingshabitualtakeupotherresourceswithoutshameandembarrassed.McEwanraisesaquestion“howweretheytosavetheearth—assumingitneededsaving,whichhedoubted—whenitwassomuchlargerthanthebootroom”?(McEwan,2010:91)4.1.2Silentvictim   RosemaryRuetheralsowritesaboutthewomen-natureconnectionsinherNewWomen/NewEarth,shesays:“womenmustseethattherecanbenoliberationforthemandnosolutionofecologicalcrisiswithinasocietywhosefundamentalmodelofrelationshipcontinuestobeoneofdomination.Theymustunitethedemandsofthewomen’smovementthoseoftheecologicalmovementtoenvisionaradicalreshapingofthebasicsocioeconomicrelationsandtheunderlyingvaluesofthis(modernindustrial)society”.(Ruether,1975:204)McEwanspeakshighlyoftheredeemingpowerofmaternalfemininitybecauseitdoesgoodfortheliberationofmenfrommasculinity.Changingmen’sinherentideaofandrocentrismsoastocoordinatetherelationshipbetweenmenandwomen.Men’sattitudetonaturewillchangebytheinfluenceofwomanliness.Asaresult,therelationshipbetweenhumanbeingsandnatureareingreatharmony.Onthesurface,Beard’sbehaviourtowomeninSolarmakesreadersthinkMcEwanisawomanize.Actually,McEwanfightsagainstallformsofoppressiononwoman,andcallsfortheestablishmentofasocietybasedongenderequality.(蓝纯,1988:42)   Beardisabald,shortandfatmiddle-agedman.Suchanaverage-lookingmanisstillattractiveforsomewomeneventhoughhehasexperiencedfivemarriages.PatriceisBeard’sfifthwife.McEwan’sdescriptionofPatriceisrare.ReadersgetinformationaboutPatricemostlyfromBeard’sself-centerednarration,anunreliablenarration.Atthebeginningofthenovel,Beardsayshisfifthmarriageisdisintegrating,hiswifehasanaffairwithTarpin,abuilder,seveninchestallerandtwentyyearsyoungerthanBeard,“flagrantly,punitively,certainlywithoutremorse”.(McEwan,2010:3)Infact,themotivationofPatrice’sbehaviourisapparentlypurerevengeonBeard’sfrequentlyinfidelities.PatricelookslikeMarilynMonroe,andsheisindeedbyfarthemostbeautifulofBeard’swives.Patricestopspleasinghimatall.Shewearsdifferentclothesandhasadifferentlookaroundthehouse,neverteaseorflirtwithhim,justignoreshispresence.BeforegoingtotheNorthpole,PatricesaystoBeard,“thecheerfulnessshehadshownaroundthehousewastoconcealherwretchedness;theaffairwithTarpinwassupposedtosaveherfromhumiliation.ShedemandedtoknowhowBeardwasgoingtoexplainawayelevenaffairsinfiveyears”.(McEwan,2010:54)Yearsofenduringcannotsavetheirmarriage,Patriceisthevictimofpatriarchalsociety.   AngelaBeard,Beard’smother,anothervictiminmarriageofpatriarchal’sdogmas.Angelaisaemaciatedbeauty,amiddle-classwoman,stockbrokerHenryBeard’swife.Shortlyaftertheirmarried,“forreasonsthatremainedprivate”(McEwan,2010:224),Angeladoesnotloveherhusband.ThenAngelabeginsaseriesofaffairswithseventeenloversforelevenyears.WithoutthoseloversAngela“wouldhavehatedherselfandgonemad”.(McEwan,2010:226)Angelausesthepracticalactiontoexpressherdissatisfactionwithmarriageandsocialcustoms.Evenbraverthanhercontemporaries,Angelastillinthesanctuaryofhermarriage.Influencedbytheideologyofpatriarchalsocietyandcustomsatthattime,Angelakeepsthefamilycomplete,givesuptherighttopursuehappiness.4.2Resistancestopatriarchy   Ecofeministshavestudiedtheinterconnectionsbetweenthedominationofwomenandtheexploitationofnaturethenconcludedthattheinterconnecteddominationonwomenandnatureisduetothepatriarchalideology.Ecofeminismregardsthepatriarchyistheoriginofmen’soppressionoverwomenandnature,andtheultimategoalofecofeminismistobreakupthepatriarchy.Withtheunbridleddevelopmentofindustrializationandmodernization,seriousenvironmentpollutionanddestructionofnaturalsystemcausethescientists’attentioninSolar.Socialelitesgraduallyrealizedtheplanetwassick.Theydoeverythingtheycouldtosavetheearthonthesurface,infactforfameandmoney,suchasBeardandBraby.Whilewomeninthisnovelaredifferentfromtheselfishandviolentmalecharacters.Generallyspeaking,therearetwokindsoffemaleinthisnovel,tolerantwomenandnewwomen,bothofthemtreatsnatureandenvironmentprotectionaswaystomakemoneyandhonor,onthecontrary,theythinknatureissacred.Savingtheplanetisthemostimportanttaskfortheywanttogetalongwellwithnature.Theirtypicalwomanlinessisthekeytoliberatenatureandwomenfrommale-domination.4.2.1Tolerantwomen   MelissaBrowne,abeautifulwoman,isBeard’sonlyviableloveinhislifeinEnglish.SheisverypatienttoBeard.AlsothinksBeardisabrilliantscientistlikeotherwomen.MelissaisaeconomicallyindependentwomanwhoownsthreeshopsinNorthLondonsellingdanceclothes,aneconomicallymindedperson.EighteenyearsyoungerthanBeardbutmatureenoughtotolerantBeard’sabsence,becausesheknows“hewasboundtoseethematterherwayintheend”.(McEwan,2010:184)BeardtreatsMelissa’sdancestudioandapartmentasharbourofrefuge.Melissa’sunplannedpregnancyshockedhimbecausehe“privatelysworetohimselfthathewouldneverbecomeafather”.(McEwan,2010:206)Influencedbytheinnermotherhood,MelissabelievesBeardcouldbealoyalhusbandandresponsiblefatherandinsistsongivingbirthtoCatrionaBeard.ForthreeyearsoldCatriona,herfatherisherowhoisbusyonsavingtheworld.Infact,Beard’srefusaltobeafatherindicateshisselfishandirresponsibility.   Onaccountofnature’sconnectionwithwomen,womenalwaysthinksavingnatureisagreatcareer.OneofBeard’sloverinAmerican,Darlene,awaitress,alsoproudofhisenvironmentalprotectionindustry,“buthoney,themainnewsisyou.LordsburgwasonNBClastnight,andCNNwasfilmingonMainStreetyesterdayrightbytheExxonstation,andeveryone’stalkingabouttomorrow.I’msoproudofyou!”(McEwan,2010:289)4.2.2Newwomen   MaisieFarmer,Beard’suniversityfriendandhisfirstwife,anactivesupporterofwomen’sliberationmovement.Aftergraduationfromuniversity,shegivesupheroriginalintentiontostudyforaPh.D.onAphraBehnandengagesonsocialsecuritybenefitinsteadofajobintheuniversitylibrary.Shecouldbeanactivewomanatthattime.Maisiestudiesthetheoryofsociology,attendsagroupmanagedbyacollectiveofCalifornianwomenandstartsupaclassbyherself.Astheraisingoffemaleconsciousness,“sheconfrontedtheblatantfactofpatriarchyandherhusband’sroleinanetworkofoppression”.(McEwan,2010:240)Maisietreatswomen’smovementasamirror,everythingisdifferent,butBeard’spatriarchalminddoesnotchange.Hebelievesthat‘it(housework)boredhimmorethanitdidher”.(McEwan,2010:240)BeardalwaysrefusestochangethenMaisiedecidestoleavehimtojoinacommuneforminginthesoddenhillsofmid-Wales.Sheindulgesherselfintheenjoymentofwomenandnature.   SocialanthropologistNancyTempleistheonlywomaninBeard’scommittee.Shedarestoquestiontheobjectiveofscience,inaconferencewithBeardandothermalescientists,Templeconsiders“thegenewasnotanobjectiveentity,merelywaitingtoberevealedbyscientists.Itwasentirelymanufacturedbytheirhypotheses,theircreativity,andtheirinstrumentation,withoutwhichitcouldnotbedetected”.(McEwan,2010:151)Beardandothermalephysicistsfeelembarrassedbecauseoftheirinsistenceonthetraditionalconcept.Hercalmnessstatementcausesastir,inordertoquelltheuproarBeardsays“itwastrue,womenwereunderrepresentedinphysicsandalwayshadbeen”.Later,thereisadebatebetweenNancyTempleandBeardandotherson“WomenandPhysics”,Beard“sharedtheplatformwithvariousacademicsfromthehumanities,mostmen,allhostile”.(McEwan,2010:158)Templedarestobreakupthedeeprootedpatriarchysocialbias,male-centeredcultureandmaledominanceinthediscoursepubliclymeansherendeavorandawakeningoffemalesubjectconsciousness.4.3Humannatureandsolvingcrisis   McEwanfindsawaytosolvetheproblemashesaystoDanielZalewski,“globalwarmingsuddenlywasn’tanabstractissue,becausehumanshadtosolveit—untrustworthy,venal,sweet,lovelyhumans”.(Zalewski,2009:2)McEwanregardstheoriginofenvironmentalcrisisishumannature.   Solartakestheglobalenvironmentcrisisasthebackgroundandregardshumanityisthewaytosolvecrisiswhichcaughtlotsofattentionfromcritics.Thedevelopmentofindustrialcivilizationdoestremendousharmtonature,humanbeingsconstantdesireandselfishintensifythecrisisbetweenhumanbeingsandnatureaswellasmenandwomen.Femalecharactersinthenovelseeminglycontrolledbymalediscourse,maleinthisnoveltreatnatureandwomenastheirobjectsofsqueezeandoppression,toolsofself-realization.Becauseoffemale’snaturalmotherhoodtheyputupwithandforgivemale’sarrogantandselfish.Bydoingso,McEwan’spraisetowomenbecomesself-evident.Facingtheimbalancedrelationshipcausedbyhumanbeings’wrong.Onlyfullyunderstandingfemale’sroleinsolvingcrisisandliberatingthemfrompatriarchaloppression,humancrisiscanberemission.Bybreakingupmale’sdominationandbinaryoppositionbetweenmenandwomen,menandnature,toestablishingharmoniousandequalrelationshipbetweenmenandwomen,scienceandnature,getridofhumanselfnessandmalesuperiority,environmentalcrisisandgendercrisiscanbesolved.ChapterFiveConclusion   Withthedeteriorationoftherelationshipsbetweennatureandmen,womenandmen,morecriticsandscholarspayattentiontotheresearchonecology,feminismandecofeminism.Ecofeminismisbornfromthecombinationofecologyandfeminismandtheultimategoalistoeliminateallkindsofoppressionsinpatriarchalsociety.GretaGaardandMurphydescribethat“ecofeminismisapracticalmovementforsocialchangearisingoutofthestrugglesofwomentosustainthemselves,theirfamilies,andtheircommunities.Thesestrugglesareagainstthemale-developmentandenvironmentaldegradationcausedbypatriarchalsocieties,multinationalbalance,hierarchicalandmatrifocalsocieties,thecontinuanceofindigenousculturesandeconomicvaluesandprogramsbasedonsubsistenceandsustainability.”(Gaard,Murphy,1988:2-7)   CriticsandscholarsprefertoanalyzesIanMcEwan’sworksfromthepointofecologyandfeminism.AsMcEwanisafamousmalewriterwhodoesgreatindescribingwomenandnature’sconnectedposition,andalsoportraysfemale’svirtuesandredemptivepowerinhisnovels.Ecofeminismpointsthatthereissomelinkbetweenmen’sexplorationonnatureandmen’sdominationofwomen,andthedoubleoppressiononnatureandwomenstemfromthesamesource,thatispatriarchalideology.However,itispossibletoanalyzeMcEwan’sworksfromtheperspectiveofecofeminism.ThroughtheecofeminismpointofviewtoanalysisMcEwan’sthreerepresentativenovelsfromeachwritingperiod,itcanbeseenthatthemajorthemeinallhiswritingperiodsistheideologyofecofeminismandhisconsistentawarenessofecofeminismisexpressed.Meanwhile,McEwanalsocomesupwiththewaytosolvenatureandwomen’sdilemmainhisnovel.   Astotherelationshipbetweenfemaleandmale,McEwandoesnotsupporttoshapeafemaledominatedsocietyinwhichfemaleprevailsoverthemale.Mutualcare,mutualrespect,what’stheimportant,mutuallearningarethebestwaytoformaharmoniousrelationship.Female’suniquewomanhooddoesgoodformen’sbackingtohumanity,thenmenandwomentogethertorebuildingaharmoniousrelationshipbetweennatureandhumanbeings.   Asawriterwithstrongsenseofecofeminism,mutualcare,mutualstudyandpayattentiontohumannatureistheproperwaytocoordinatetherelationshipbetweenhumanandnature,maleandfemale.Itisalsoanappropriatemethodtoresolveecofeminismproblemsinreallife.
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