Environmental Studies at UVM

ENVS 295 Culture of Nature

This course will offer an advanced introduction to current issues and debates at the intersection of environmental thought and cultural studies. The field of cultural studies will be explored in terms of its potentials to address and contribute to the understanding of environmental issues and practices. We will study culture and cultural practices -- including music, film and visual art, print and digital media, fashion, and protest cultures -- as both the medium through which and the terrain within which different ideas about people and nature, and different social and ecological relations, are articulated and contested. Through readings, discussion, and media viewing and analysis, we will explore and examine how ideas about nature and environmental issues are framed and represented by various media; how these images and representations are used and contested by different cultural communities; the ways in which environmental ideas circulate between mass and digital media and popular and alternative cultures in North America (and the world) today; the relationship between culture and ‘environmental identity’ at local, regional, national, and transnational scales; and possibilities for cultivating a ‘greener’ environmental culture in our lives and in the world at large. Requirements will include class attendance and participation, a critical cultural analysis/presentation, a research paper, and a group project (which may involve some form of media production).







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