The riotous plurality of the environmental humanities, a community of scholars, thinkers, and activists that overflows with passion, imagination, and good cheer in the face of catastrophe, has inspired this book. I’m grateful to several organizations who have hosted me and these ideas, including the Conférence Universitaire de Suisse Occidentale and Université de Lausanne, George Washington University’s Medieval and Early Modern Studies Institute, the Environmental Humanities Centre and English Department at Bristol University, the James Edwin Savage Annual Lecture at the University of Mississippi, the Arthur F. Kinney Center for Renaissance Studies at the University of Massachusetts, and the Edmund S. and Nathalie Rumowicz Lecture Series at the University of Rhode Island. I thank the Glasgow Review of Books and Stanford’s Arcade web magazine for e-publishing early versions of some of these pages. Fathom-deep gratitude goes to Vanessa Daws, who painted the image in the preface.
I write toward plural futures I cannot know and dedicate this book to our plural unknowing.