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Different Shades of Green

African Literature, Environmental Justice, and Political Ecology
Byron Caminero-Santangelo

BUY Cloth · 224 pp. · 6 × 9 · ISBN 9780813936055 · $59.50 · Jul 2014
BUY Paper · 224 pp. · 6 × 9 · ISBN 9780813936062 · $27.50 · Jul 2014
BUY Ebook · 224 pp. · ISBN 9780813936079 · $27.50 · Jul 2014

CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title, American Library Association (2014)

Engaging important discussions about social conflict, environmental change, and imperialism in Africa, Different Shades of Green points to legacies of African environmental writing, often neglected as a result of critical perspectives shaped by dominant Western conceptions of nature and environmentalism. Drawing on an interdisciplinary framework employing postcolonial studies, political ecology, environmental history, and writing by African environmental activists, Byron Caminero-Santangelo emphasizes connections within African environmental literature, highlighting how African writers have challenged unjust, ecologically destructive forms of imperial development and resource extraction.

Different Shades of Green also brings into dialogue a wide range of African creative writing—including works by Chinua Achebe, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, Bessie Head, Nadine Gordimer, Zakes Mda, Nuruddin Farah, Wangari Maathai, and Ken Saro-Wiwa—in order to explore vexing questions for those involved in the struggle for environmental justice, in the study of political ecology, and in the environmental humanities, urging continued imaginative thinking in effecting a more equitable, sustain¬able future in Africa.


Different Shades of Green is the first book-length study of African environmental literature. This revelatory, truly interdisciplinary book brings together insights from political ecology, ecocriticism, and environmental activism. The result is a magnificent, ambitious book that is both innovative and timely.

Rob Nixon, Rachel Carson Professor of English,University of Wisconsin – Madison, author of Slow Violence and the Environmentalism of the Poor

About the Author(s): 

Byron Caminero-Santangelo, Associate Professor of English at the University of Kansas, is author of African Fiction and Joseph Conrad: Reading Postcolonial Intertextuality and coeditor of Environment at the Margins: Literary and Environmental Studies in Africa.

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