Date of Award

Fall 2021

Document Type

Thesis Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



Committee Chairperson

Joan Woolfrey, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Simon Ruchti, Ph.D

Committee Member

Jina Fast, Ph.D.


This thesis examines the crisis of climate change through an ecofeminist philosophical lens. Ecofeminist theory offers robust insight into how we might address our planetary dilemma and its related issues, yet it has been largely dismissed by scholars in both feminist and environmental philosophy; it has not experienced the resurgence that Greta Gaard called for when she stated the need for a “New Eco-feminism.” I begin with a discussion of the misconceptions of this field and claim that ecofeminism might experience a rejuvenation by returning to its origins: the philosophy of Simone De Beauvoir. Further, I argue that the “new ecofeminism” should be a Beauvoirian ecofeminism. Throughout this project, I place special significance on the concepts of ambiguity and reciprocity understood in a phenomenological sense. I explain why these can be extended to nature and can evoke us to challenge our notions of otherness and intersubjectivity. I examine both ecofeminist and conventional approaches to climate related issues and determine that none of these have truly addressed what Karen Warren termed “the logic of domination”: the dysfunctional mentality that operates on both an individual and societal level. Meaningful and enduring change would necessarily be the result of a shift in this mindset, beginning in each individual. Employing Beauvoir’s ideas of conversion, I emphasize phenomenological reorientation as a crucial element to the Beauvoirian ecofeminist approach.