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Lecture 7

CMN2160 Lecture 7: Environmental Communication

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Patrick Mc Curdy

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Environmental Communication Anthropocene: new era where humans have an impact on the planet, began 10,000 years ago Climate change is the most pressing issue we face as a species Trickles down into national regional debates Link to communications: We learn about these issues through communications Stakeholders with interests are presenting these issues to us Environmental communication: the pragmatic constitutive vehicle for our understanding of the environment as well as our relationships to the natural world Social constructionism: Symbolic medium that we use in constructing environmental problems Negotiates societys different responses to environmental problems Functions of environmental communication (Cox) Pragmatic: practical function to the message, the communication is meant to do something Ex. notify you about problems, suggest solutions, tell you to vote Constitutive: helps us construct compose representations of nature and environmental problems as subjects for our understanding, how we come to understand why its an issue How are these constructions achieved? You look at what feelings are invoked Ex. the use of music Ex. repetition of the message Ex. referencing the audience Look at the audio and visual together Technology is often framed as a saviour for our environmental problems, but there is a disconnect between the intention of tech and the actual outcome The environment is a social construct, so its interesting how stakeholders construct it Extractive Gaze: Sees the planet as a resource that can be exploited by humans Assign value to land The planet can be divided up (with maps for our understanding) to be used Romantic Gaze: nature= pristine, must be protected, untouched Implicit: humans are threatening this view of nature Convergence of extractivist and romantic gaze in advertising: Green public sphere: Human communication as symbolic actions Our experience of nature is mediated 6 major voices within this public sphere (memorize these for the final! And the critiques!)
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