Ecomedia: Of Angelic Images and Environmental Values
van Vuuren, K and Lester, EA, Ecomedia: Of Angelic Images and Environmental Values, Media International Australia incorporating Culture and Policy, 127, (May) pp. 71-81. ISSN 1329-878X (2008) [Refereed Article]
The prominence of media events in 2006, including the release of former US VicePresident Al Gore's documentary An Inconvenient Truth, the publication of the Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change, the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, even the death of 'eco-celebrity' Steve Irwin, suggested a need to devote an issue of Media International Australia to media and the environment. The study of environmentalism through the lens of media, journalism and communication is all but absent in Australia, with some notable exceptions. This issue of MIA goes some way towards redressing the absences identified by Tom Jagtenberg and David McKie in their influential book Eco-Impacts and the Greening of Postmodernity, published more than 10 years ago, which claimed for the environment an equal status with traditional research foci: class, race and gender. The current public interest in environmental issues emphasises this point, although it is not unprecedented. History shows that environmental issues move in waves to and from the heart of public debate. As well as showcasing some of the field's distinct approaches and traditions, the articles in this issue contribute to a better understanding of this current wave and its likely aftermath. In doing so, it goes some way towards moving the environment in the direction of a more central position on the research and public agenda.