Ecologically-Oriented Social Cohesion and Integrity through Poetry and Arts

By Nilofar Shidmehr.

Published by The International Journal of Arts Theory and History

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: November 7, 2014 $US5.00

Unlike Aristotle and Heidegger who extract their concept of poetry as making/constructing/imitating from the etymology of the word poetry in Greek language, I follow Bringhurst’s philosophical trajectory and conceptualize poetry with regard to the ideogram of the word poetry in Chinese. Poetry thus becomes “Mundane” whose main characteristics are its abundance and vital rhythms. Lyrical art, respectively, becomes the collective in-tension of cohabiting with Mundane in the same house or “eco.” Such cohabiting is equivalent of dancing in tune with Mundane. As our societies are being more removed from Mundane, they are less in touch with its abundance and rhythms and are more used to synthetic practices of nourishment. Therefore they are becoming less vital with regard to social cohesion and integrity. In a lyrical co-breathing with philosophers-poets Zwicky and Irigary, I call for cultivating a vital breath, not willed by the imposed technological rules of separation, which can potentially stitch us back with Mundane together in integral sociopolitical ways.

Keywords: Poetry and Ecology, Mundane, Social Cohesion and Integrity

The International Journal of Arts Theory and History, Volume 8, Issue 3, November 2014, pp.29-39. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: November 7, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 557.629KB)).

Dr. Nilofar Shidmehr

PhD Candidate, Center for Cross Faculty Inquiry, Faculty of Education, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Nilofar Shidmehr is a PhD candidate in the Center for Cross Faculty Inquiry at The University of British Columbia. She is a poet and the author of Shirin and Salt Man, which was nominated for a BC Book Prize in 2009. Her PhD dissertation is a philosophical treatise on poetic or lyric inquiry as a viable methodology of research in humanities, social sciences, and education—one that introduces ethics as a new direction to inquiry. She promotes ecological education, a branch of which is lyric education.