The Rise of an Eco-Spiritual Imaginary reveals a shared ecological aesthetic among contemporary U.S. ethnic writers whose novels communicate a decolonial spiritual reverence for the earth. This shared narrative focus challenges white settler colonial mythologies of manifest destiny and American exceptionalism to instantiate new ways of imagining community across socially constructed boundaries of time, space, nation, race, and species. The eco-spiritual imaginary—by which I mean a shared reverence for the ecological interconnection between all living beings—articulates a common biological origin and sacredness of all life that transcends racial difference while remaining grounded in local ethnicities and bioregions. The novelists representing this transethnic struggle co-opt postmodern narrative structures to translate indigenous and non-Eurocentric knowledges and methodologies both for each-other and for a broader audience including the descendants of the white settler colonial state.

Degree Date

Spring 2022

Document Type


Degree Name





Dennis Foster

Second Advisor

Darryl Dickson-Carr

Third Advisor

Jayson Gonzales Sae-Saue

Fourth Advisor

Christopher González

Subject Area

Ecology, History, Humanities, Humanities, General/Other, Language and Literature, English and American, Language and Literature, General/Other, Religion

Number of Pages




Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License