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artful eco workings that cycle through: Close-to-Nature continuous cover forestry, experimental film-making, the eco-humanities field (deep ecology, ecocriticism, ecosophy, ecofeminism), writing & forest policy development; by cathy fitzgerald, visual culture, ncad, ireland

ecocriticism in film book 2010

Ecocinema Is a  term originally from a 2004 Scott MacDonald  ‘Towards an ecocinema‘ article. It was further explored in 2010 in Framing the world, explorations in ecocriticism and film, edited by Paula Willoquet-Maricondi (I have written a short post about this book here). From that book ecocinematic films were classified as follows:

ecocinematic films:-

‘are films that

  • overtly engage with environmental justice concerns or those that make ‘nature’ from landscapes to wildlife, a primary focus…they have broader philosophical implications of what it means to inhabit this planet.. to be a member of this ecosphere and to understand and value this community in a systemic and non-hierarchial way’
  • sometimes aspire to present more biocentric and/or ecocentric viewpoints rather than overtly anthropocentric – human centered views or interpretation of natural phenomena)
  • cut across genres, modes of production
  • may include full-length and short fiction, documentary, exp. films/video

‘ecocinema actively seeks to inform viewers about, as well as engage their participation in, addressing issues of ecological importance, raising awareness, and at times, political action.

Ecocinema – an evolving term

However, it should be noted that ‘ecocinema’ as a term is still debated and evolving in ecocriticism and media studies fields due to the recent wide interest in the area.

A valuable introduction to this vibrant area of study and how ecocinema studies are growing and being defined is:

Rust, S., & Monani, S. (2013). Introduction: Cuts to dissolves – defining and situating ecocinema studies. In S. Rust, S. Monani, & S. Cubitt (Eds.), Ecocinema theory and practice (1-13). New York: Routledge. 

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