An Introduction to Ecofeminism: Alternative Ecofeminist Readings of Ding-a-Ling and Two Friends

Massih Zekavat*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


After a pioneering attempt in introducing the tenets of ecofeminism in Persian, I will contend that this critical approach can facilitate a novel understanding of Persian literary tradition by reading two works of children’s literature. Ding-a-Ling written by Zohreh Parirokh and illustrated by Lisa Jamileh represents a traditional depiction of the woman-nature relationship through succumbing to several of its biases. A similarly traditional outlook is also governing the relationship between the text and illustrations where the latter slavishly follows the details of the former without introducing any digressions. According to both the text and illustrations, the relationship of a mother, her daughter and nature, that is to say the human-nature rapport, is geared toward the subordination of nature, while maternal and feminine qualities as traditionally conceived are attributed to nature and women. Hoda Hadadi’s Two Friends, on the contrary, takes a very different approach to conceptualizing the woman-nature relationship. This alternative perspective is also evident in the creative and interactive relationship between the text and illustrations. Two Friends employs various natural elements including leaves and seeds to create the collage of its illustrations. The woman-nature relationship does not seek domination over nature and is not merely founded upon anthropocentrism. Instead, it reinforces the woman-woman relationship, and foregrounds body, emotions, passions and such abstract notions as love.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-76
Number of pages22
JournalChildren’s Literature Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar-2017
Externally publishedYes

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