Environmentalism in Popular Culture Gender, Race, Sexuality, and the Politics of the Natural

ISBN-10: 0816525811
ISBN-13: 9780816525812
Edition: 2009
List price: $29.95 Buy it from $18.68
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Description: In this thoughtful and highly readable book, Noël Sturgeon illustrates the myriad and insidious ways in which American popular culture depicts social inequities as “natural” and how our images of “nature” interfere with creating solutions to  More...

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Book details

List price: $29.95
Copyright year: 2009
Publisher: University of Arizona Press
Publication date: 12/12/2008
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 240
Size: 5.75" wide x 8.50" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.682
Language: English

In this thoughtful and highly readable book, Noël Sturgeon illustrates the myriad and insidious ways in which American popular culture depicts social inequities as “natural” and how our images of “nature” interfere with creating solutions to environmental problems that are just and fair for all. Why is it, she wonders, that environmentalist messages in popular culture so often “naturalize” themes of heroic male violence, suburban nuclear family structures, and U.S. dominance in the world? And what do these patterns of thought mean for how we envision environmental solutions, like “green” businesses, recycling programs, and the protection of threatened species? Although there are other books that examine questions of culture and environment, this is the first book to employ a global feminist environmental justice analysis to focus on how racial inequality, gendered patterns of work, and heteronormative ideas about the family relate to environmental questions. Beginning in the late 1980s and moving to the present day, Sturgeon unpacks a variety of cultural tropes, including ideas about Mother Nature, the purity of the natural, and the allegedly close relationships of indigenous people with the natural world. She investigates the persistence of the “myth of the frontier” and its extension to the frontier of space exploration. She ponders the popularity (and occasional controversy) of penguins (and penguin family values) and questions assumptions about human warfare as “natural.” The book is intended to provoke debates—among college students and graduate students, among their professors, among environmental activists, and among all citizens who are concerned with issues of environmental quality and social equality.

List of Illustrations
Acknowledgments
Introduction: Developing a Global Feminist Environmental Justice Analysis to Understand the Politics of the Natural
The Politics of the Natural in U.S. History and Popular Culture
Naturalizing Frontiers
Frontiers of Nature: The Ecological Indian in U.S. Film
"Forever New Frontiers": Extraterrestrialism and U.S. Militarism in Space
Naturalizing Reproduction
"The Power Is Yours, Planeteers!" Race, Gender, and Sexuality in children's Environmentalist Popular Culture
Penguin Family Values: The Nature of Planetary Environmental Reproductive Justice
Naturalizing Globalization
Planetary Security, Militarism, and the Nature of Violence
Purity and Privilege or Justice and Sustainability? Natural Consumers in the Global Economy
Notes
References
Index

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