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Welcome to

2016 May 1
by Shared by Steve Rust

Welcome to

As of May 1, 2016 this site is no longer actively updated. However, we have decided to keep this static version of the site available for anyone interested in accessing our extensive (though by no means complete) bibliography of books and articles published in the field of Media and Environment between 2009 and 2015 as well as our repository of syllabi and other pedagogical goodies. As of today, the blogroll is also active and links out to a number of wonderful sites by scholars, artists, and others interested in our field.

You are also welcome to browse through old posts to get a sense of work in the field; however, please not that comments are no longer being accepted and we are no longer replying to emails sent to ecomediastudies(at)

Although this current site is no longer active, our field as a whole is incredibly vibrant right now. To stay in touch, check out the Ecomedia Facebook page, which is maintained by folks active in the Ecomedia Interest Group through ASLE (The Association for the Study of Literature and Environment). You may also be interested in the Media and Environment Interest Group active through SCMS (The Society for Cinema and Media Studies) and the IECA (the International Environmental Communication Association) and other organizations.

Farewell and Thank You

2016 April 11
by Shared by Steve Rust

After due consideration about the future of the field of Ecomedia Studies, Salma Monani and I (who co-founded this website in 2009), have decided that it is time to close down and to focus our attention on other ways of promoting the study of Media and Environment.  The site will remain up through the end of April so that we have time to archive the extensive bibliography, syllabi, and key posts that folks have shared with us over the years.

For those of you who have allowed us to share your work on this site and/or followed the site over the years we offer our sincere and heartfelt thanks.  There is no denying that together we have fulfilled our original mission statement of facilitating interdisciplinary and innovative approaches to the study of non-print media as it applies to environmental discourse and action.

As the primary moderator of the site over the past seven years, I have watched our field grow from a small collection of individuals spread out across the globe to a thriving international field of study that has quickly moved into the mainstream of Cinema and Media Studies and is poised to become even more prominent in the coming years as more and more scholars, artists, and activists collaborate on projects that demonstrate just how important it has become to explore, analyze, and interrogate the connections between media and environmental issues in a wired and warming world.

Salma and I will continue to work within the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment with our many wonderful colleagues in the Ecomedia interest group, within the Society for Cinema and Media Studies with our many wonderful colleagues in the Media and Environment interest group, and with the other organizations and institutions doing work in this field.

We hope that you will continue to be an active participant on the Ecomedia Facebook page. You are also welcome to contact me personally at should you wish to stay in touch about your own work or become involved with the ASLE Ecomedia Scholarly Interest Group.

As they say in the movies, so long and thanks for all the fish.

CFP: Urban Netherworlds

2016 April 5
by Shared by Steve Rust

FYI: Looks like a terrific opportunity for ecocinema scholars to make an impact on the conversation in film studies.


Call for Contributors 

Urban Netherworlds: Noir and Neo-Noir New York and Los Angeles in Film (under contract)

Film noir is one of the most intensely studied cinematic genres, yet Mark Shiel remarks that while numerous studies have helped define the genre in thematic, stylistic, and technical terms, “they have engaged very little with the local geography of film noirs, whether set in Los Angeles, New York, or other cities.” Yet it is hard to think of another genre where the identity of a particular city or neighborhood or even street carries equal diegetic weight.

The symbiotic screen relationship between New York and Los Angeles in noir and neo-noir is reflected in the work of actors such as Robert De Niro, Roy Scheider, Al Pacino, and directors such as William Friedkin, Sidney Lumet, Martin Scorsese, John Cassavettes, and Roman Polanski. Kathryn Bigelow puts Jamie Lee Curtis at risk in New York (Blue Steel) and then does the same thing to Angela Bassett in Los Angeles (Strange Days). In Brian De Palma’s Body Double Melanie Griffith is menaced by a Hollywood killer with a penchant for disguises and power tools; in Jane Campion’s In the Cut Meg Ryan is stalked by a murderer who may be a member of the NYPD.

This book will bring together a limited number of essays on the ways in which New York and Los Angeles have been represented, over the last half-century or more, in noir film. What joins these essays is a thematic orientation toward darkness, in atmospheric and architectonic terms, in social and psychological terms, and in terms of experiencing urban life amidst disruptive change, economic dislocation, and real or perceived existential threat.

We are looking for essays of 7,500-9,000 words that fall into the following categories:

● Close readings or re-readings of individual films

● Comparative discussions of two or more films, related by plot, characterization, location, and cinematography

● Discussions of thematic commonalities within several films set in Los Angeles, set in New York, or set in both

● Adaptations from literary sources—novels, plays, memoirs

● Studies of NY- and LA-based films made by non-US directors, e.g., Sergio Leone’s Once Upon a Time in America, Wim Wenders’s The End of Violence and The Million Dollar Hotel

The editors are especially interested in innovative and unusual approaches to films that have become canonical in the scholarship on film noir and, although it is still an emerging field, on neo-noir. Redefinition of noir and neo-noir New York and Los Angeles, grounded in new critical and theoretical initiatives in the study of these genres, will be given full consideration.

Please send a 500-word abstract and a 100-word bio to both co-editors: James J. Ward ( and Cynthia J. Miller (

Publication timetable:

May 15, 2016 – Deadline for Abstracts

June 1, 2016 – Notification of Acceptances

October 31, 2016 – Chapter Drafts Due

March 1, 2017 – Chapter Revisions Due

May 15, 2017 – Delivery to Publisher

Acceptance will be contingent upon a contributor’s ability to meet these deadlines and to deliver professional-calibre work. Contributors who do not submit their initial drafts by the deadline will be dropped, unless a prior agreement with the editors has been reached.

Media and Environment Panels at SCMS 2016 in Atlanta This Week

2016 March 27
by Shared by Steve Rust

If you’re headed to the Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference this week in Atlanta, be sure to check out all of the amazing panels being sponsored by the Media and Environment Special Interest Group, including panels as early as Wednesday at noon (B-22).

Here is what’s in store:

B22: Ecomedia: From Classroom to Community
D15: Hydrological Media
H17: Ecologies of Scale
K19: Ecosensuality in PostCinema
M19: Media, Ecology, and New Materialism
P17: Bioregional Cinema: Environment, Culture, Image
Q8: Cinema and the Planetary
U18: Media and Ecological Crisis

The Marvelous Clouds

2016 March 25
by Shared by Steve Rust

Always great to hear about a new publication that folks in our field should know about. This one’s been out for a while but I’m just hearing about it now – as these things go. Click the title to link to the book’s homepage at the University of Chicago Press website.

The Marvelous Clouds: Toward a Philosophy of Elemental Media

John Durham Peters

416 pages | 4 halftones, 3 line drawings, 1 table | 6 x 9 | © 2015

When we speak of clouds these days, it is as likely that we mean data clouds or network clouds as cumulus or stratus. In their sharing of the term, both kinds of clouds reveal an essential truth: that the natural world and the technological world are not so distinct. In The Marvelous Clouds, John Durham Peters argues that though we often think of media as environments, the reverse is just as true—environments are media.

Peters defines media expansively as elements that compose the human world. Drawing from ideas implicit in media philosophy, Peters argues that media are more than carriers of messages: they are the very infrastructures combining nature and culture that allow human life to thrive.  Through an encyclopedic array of examples from the oceans to the skies, The Marvelous Clouds reveals the long prehistory of so-called new media. Digital media, Peters argues, are an extension of early practices tied to the establishment of civilization such as mastering fire, building calendars, reading the stars, creating language, and establishing religions. New media do not take us into uncharted waters, but rather confront us with the deepest and oldest questions of society and ecology: how to manage the relations people have with themselves, others, and the natural world.

A wide-ranging meditation on the many means we have employed to cope with the struggles of existence—from navigation to farming, meteorology to Google—The Marvelous Clouds shows how media lie at the very heart of our interactions with the world around us.  Peters’s  book will not only change how we think about media but provide a new appreciation for the day-to-day foundations of life on earth that we so often take for granted.

Conference CFP: EASLCE 2016, Final Call

2016 March 20
by Shared by Steve Rust


“Wildness without Wilderness”: The Poiesis of Energy and Instability

The European Association for the Study of Literature, Culture and Environment (EASLCE): 7th Biennial Conference (Brussels, Belgium— from 27 to 30 October 2016)

Hosted by the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) and its Department of Languages and Literatures, in association with the Benelux Association for the Study of Art, Culture and the Environment (BASCE)

As Gary Snyder reminds us in “The Etiquette of Freedom” (1990), wilderness—i.e. the expanse of the physical natural world untamed by humans—may have considerably shrunk; by contrast, however, wildness—i.e. the instability of the material world and of its agencies that elude human regulation and control—very much remains a constant in the existence of beings enmeshed with their environments. 

Contributing to this ineradicable and enduring wildness and instability, other constants such as energy and creativity inform both the non-human and human worlds of impermanence and indeterminacy (Serpil Opperman & Serenella Iovino, Hubert Zapf, Sidney Dobrin).  Indeed, not only do energy flows and their disruptions remain inseparable from life and living organisms; moreover, energy also proves inseparable from poiesis, understood as a potential for making that combines randomness and design.  With the relational activity leading to transformation that underlies the spontaneous self-organization and patterning of many systems (Fritjof Capra, Herbert Maturana & Francisco Varela), poetic travail is in fact what links the wild artistry and skillful means of nature to those of human production (Jonathan Skinner; Harriet Tarlo).  What the various narratives respectively explored by particle physics, material ecocriticism, the energy humanities, experimental ecopoetics, or ecospiritualities tell us is that the universe is teeming with (eco)compositional forces and responses, with experiential space opening itself up to forms of joint making and unmaking, with temporary montage and collage artistry blending chance and intention through physical and/or mental assemblage, dissipation, and re-arrangement. 

The 7th Biennial Meeting of EASLCE, in association with BASCE, will be held in the fluctuating, multilingual urban space of Brussels, a city that has proved home as much to the “ordered wildness” of physics uncovered by Nobel Prize-winning scientists like Ilya Prigogine and François Englert as to the one of the mindscapes reveled in by the Symbolist and Surrealist avant-gardes. 

Therefore, from all environmental fields of inquiry and endeavour, from the humanities and natural sciences to the creative arts and public policy/activist spheres, the Organizing Committee invites papers probing into the poiesis of non-human and human systems, and into their interrelated narratives of energy, wildness and travail.  Spanning the spectrum from natural to textual energies, possible perspectives may include—but are not necessarily limited to—some of the following approaches:

-The impact of concepts such as energy and poiesis, instability and creativity on current ecocritical thinking/theorizing, on ecoliteracy, ecolinguistics, eco-narratology, ecosophy, and eco-ethics.

-Patterns of assemblage, proliferation and travail in both non-human and human texts, procedures and organisms; systemic readings of energetic patterns of dissipation and collapse.

-Representations of chaos, wildness, autopoiesis, and complexity in literature, film, the arts, linguistics, philosophy, science, and digital environments.

-Ecopoetics and the poiesis of energy and instability: entropy and “ordered wildness” in textual environments and texts-as-environments; elusive energies, assemblage and fragmentation in recombinant and procedural eco-aesthetics; humans as ecocompositional and eco-aesthetic animals.

-Energetic travails under and above ground: the poiesis of fuel and fuel extraction; the chaos, wildness and complexity informing petrocultures; cultural and literary responses to the environmental practices and addictions of “Homo Energeticus.”

-“Wildness without wilderness” in cities: urban collapse, mutation and apocalypse vs. urban renaturing, sustainability and ecological resilience; cities as “living eco-labs,” urban entanglements in the web of the bioeconomy; urban eco-design; the city as ecological palimpsest and travail.

-Transmutations of energies in the interlocking of mental and physical ecologies; ecospiritual and ecopsychological readings of the poiesis of matter and consciousness in interaction.

– Energy exchange and instability in the travail between physical and social ecologies; the dynamics of channeling and dissipating psychic and social energy around ecological crises; the travail of mapping out the (geo)politics of energy.

-Energetic labour and travail: the poiesis of the elements and natural forces (water, the weather, tectonics, etc.); the formation of “counter-imaginaries” to energetic mischanneling and depletion; the poiesis of decomposition, recycling and composting.

– Embodied “wildness without wilderness”: randomness, design and energy exchange in animals and plants; shifting energies and relationalities between human and non-human bodies/forms of “creatureliness”; the poiesis of the feral; zoopoetics.

-Randomness and design in nature as sources of ecophobia and ecophilia; the gaps between the artistry of nature and human creativity as fuel for ecophobic and ecophilic narratives and texts.

-The poiesis of energy and instability at work in human and non-human environments as fuel for “Une écopoétique francophone?”, “Eine deutschsprachige Ökopoetik?”, etc.?

The primary conference languages will be English, French, German, and Dutch/Flemish.

We welcome both scholarly and creative proposals.  The submission formats are either for individual scholarly papers of 20 mins/individual creative contributions/performances of 20 minutes, or for pre-made panels of 3 twenty-minute scholarly papers/creative contributions.

The format for submissions is as follows:

-individual proposals: title + 300-500 word abstract + biosketch of 5-10 lines + IT requirement + full contact details.

-preformed panels: 500 word abstract for the panel comprising general topic and format outline + participants’ biosketches and full contact details + IT requirements, supplemented by individual 300 word abstracts for each contribution on the panel.



All submissions will be internationally peer-reviewed BY EASLCE AND BASCE

CFP: Teaching in/about the Anthropocene

2016 March 8
by Shared by Steve Rust

reposted from:

Teaching Media Quarterly Vol. 4, No. 2

“Media and Environment: Teaching in/about the Anthropocene” 

Submission deadline: Earth Day, April 22, 2016

Teaching Media Quarterly seeks lesson plans that ask students to critically engage with the complex relationship between media and the environment. We ask for submissions that explicate the role of media discourses and media technologies in light of growing concerns about an array of environmental issues including, but not limited to, climate change, drought, food justice, resource extraction, and migration. We encourage pedagogical perspectives informed by research and activism that examine the natural sciences, journalism, materiality, popular culture, and cultural studies within the context of environmental thought.

We invite submitters to consider the following potential topics as inspiration:

  • Media technology and their material consequences
  • News media and climate change/justice
  • Representations of nature and/or environmentalism in popular culture
  • Green and environmentalist media
  • Greenwashing and corporate communications
  • Advocacy campaigns produced by students and/or social movements

Teaching Media Quarterly Submission Guidelines  

All submissions must include: 1) a title, 2) an overview (word limit: 500 words) 3) comprehensive rationale (using accessible language explain the purpose of the assignment(s), define key terms, and situate in relevant literature) (word limit: 500), 4) a general timeline, 5) a detailed lesson plan and assignment instructions, 6) teaching materials (handouts, rubrics, discussion prompts, viewing guides, etc.), 7) a full bibliography of readings, links, and/or media examples, and 8) a short biography (100-150 words).

Please email all submissions using the TMQ.Submission.Template (2) (.docx) in ONE Microsoft Word document to

Review Policy
Submissions will be reviewed by each member of the editorial board. Editors will make acceptance decisions based on their vision for the issue and an assessment of contributions. It is the goal of Teaching Media Quarterly to notify submitters of the editors’ decisions within two weeks of submission receipt.Teaching Media Quarterly is dedicated to circulating practical and timely approaches to media concepts and topics from a variety of disciplinary and methodological perspectives. Our goal is to promote collaborative exchange of undergraduate teaching resources between media educators at higher education institutions. As we hope for continuing discussions and exchange as well as contributions to Teaching Media Quarterly we encourage you to visit our website at

Conference CFP: Contextualizing Asian Ecocinema

2016 March 4
by Shared by Steve Rust

“Contextualizing Asian Ecocinema: Past and Future”

27 and 28 May 2016 (Friday and Saturday), The University of Hong Kong

Organized by the Department of Comparative Literature and the Centre for the Study of
Globalization and Cultures (CSGC), The University of Hong Kong.

With growing awareness of global environmental issues and increasing interests in the
study of Asian films in relation to ecocritical theories, this 2-day conference seeks to
assemble international scholars and expand the field of ecology and film towards a
broader coverage in its Asian context.
From cinematic depictions of Asian environmental crises, films revealing environmental
impacts brought about by transnational networking and exchange, to artistic
representations of human, nature, wilderness and ecology, ecological issues in Asia have
been exposed to the outside world through fictional films, documentaries and various
forms of media.
With a view to add to the innovative and groundbreaking efforts made by debates on
ecocinema in the western context, this conference on Asian Ecocinema aims to provide a
forum for scholars of film and media studies to exchange new research in three major
– New ecocritical approaches in Asian cinema
– Contemporary ecological issues in greater China and Asian context
– Eco-film language and conventions, genres, and philosophical implications in Asian Cinema
We invite proposals of 250-300 words for consideration. Please also include a brief
biography of no more than 100 words and a short working bibliography with your
proposal. Selected presentation papers will be invited for a forthcoming publication
project on Asian Ecocinema studies. The deadline for proposals is March 10, 2016.

Successful presenters will be notified of their acceptance by March 18, 2016. We regret
that we cannot provide any funding for transportation or accommodation.

Please send proposals to BOTH Winnie Yee ( and Kiu-wai Chu
( by March 10, 2016.