Hollywoods’ Messaging about Nature and the Environment
A new paper in Environmental Communication examines ideologies about nature and the environment in popular, animated Hollywood films—including The Lorax, Wall-E, and Ice Age 2—through a symptomatic reading. The primary goal of the analysis is to elucidate key omissions in these texts through an assessment of the problematic—defined in this research as an a-priori answer to perceived audience concerns regarding the role of consumerism and corporate culture in environmental problems. Silences in the films revolve around: how environmental problems are defined; what the consequences are; who the responsible parties are; and what potential solutions exist to mitigate them. The significance of the research is underscored by the formation of an increasingly intimate relationship between children, consumer culture, and commercial media in the USA, as well as the increasingly dire information emerging about global environmental issues. This analysis reveals the dual, often conflicting, messages that commercial film provides for its young audiences about pivotal environmental problems and their potential resolution.
See the full paper, here.