Environmental studies have become popular, and Steven Petersheim’s excellent recent book, Rethinking Nathaniel Hawthorne and Nature: Pastoral Experiments and Environmentality, was the first book-length study to engage completely with this topic in connection to Hawthorne. His study offers so many modes of engagement Hawthorne had with nature as transcribed in Hawthorne’s journals, correspondence, stories, and novels. Other relevant groundbreaking general literary studies about ecosystems, nature, place, and literature include those by Kent C. Ryden (Sum of the Parts: The Mathematics and Politics of Regions, Place, and Writing, along with his earlier Landscape with Figures), and Matthew Wynn Sivils (American Environmental Fiction, 1782–1847). This special issue of the Nathaniel Hawthorne Review, edited by me and CJ Scruton, looks at Hawthorne’s writing through an environmental lens. Our prefatory introduction follows.

Hawthorne’s informal writings (Notebooks) and his fiction attest to his interest in the...

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