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“In an incomplete world, we depend on closure for our very survival,” writes Scott McCloud. What does it mean to continue on after the world has already ended? In post-apocalyptic fiction, survivors attempt to find meaning in a husk of a world which has suffered an unspeakable catastrophe. This project explains how the post-apocalyptic narrative structure confronts fears of trauma and loss. I will first outline how various postmodern theorists have approached the topic, before explaining how different narratives across media have played the premise out in fiction. From the mushroom cloud of Fallout Games to the zombie of Dawn of the Dead, representations of post-apocalypse posit a frighteningly unresolvable world and tap into the important question of how we tell stories.

People

Michael Suen
Researcher

Alison Byerly
Sponsor, Provost & Executive Vice President; Professor of English & American Literatures

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Jason Scorse discusses the theoretical underpinnings of economic thought that support very strong government intervention in the environmental realm, as well as the politics and messaging that the environmental community needs to win the major battles ahead.

People

Jason Scorse
Associate Professor and Program Chair, International Environmental Policy

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Professor Scorse received his PhD in agricultural and resource economics from UC-Berkeley in 2005. He is currently associate professor and chair of the International Environmental Policy Program at the Monterey Institute of International Studies. Dr. Scorse has consulted for numerous environmental organizations, including the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Sierra Club, and he is currently the lead non-market economist for the National Ocean Economics Program. Professor Scorse is also the director of the new Center for the Blue Economy, whose goal is to educate the next generation of leaders by making the Monterey Bay Region the premier location for graduate education and research in international marine policy.

Dr. Scorse has published articles in American Economic Review, California Management Review, and for books published by the Brookings Institution and Routledge Press. His book What Environmentalists Need to Know about Economics was released in 2010. Professor Scorse also sits on the board of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Research Activities Panel and the Otter Project. In addition to his scholarly work and consulting, he is a guest contributor for Grist, Environmental Economics, and Progressive Fix.

His lecture is sponsored by the Franklin Environmental Center at Hillcrest, Program in Environmental Studies, Department of Economics, Rohatyn Center for International Affairs, and the Graduate School of Translation, Interpretation, and Language Education at the Monterey Institute of International Studies.

A MiddLab Project

Sustainable Television 2011

In Spring 2011, nine students enrolled in FMMC 285 Sustainable Television: Producing Environmental Media, collaborating to produce a 50-minute television program on environmental issues. Watch the entire episode below, or scroll down for individual segments:

People

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Full Episode: (expand to full screen to fully enjoy)

Selected Stories:

A group of students capture the activist energy of Power Shift 2011 in Washington, DC:

Can a group of kids teach you about the science of climate change?

A profile of Vergennes farmer Erik Andrus and his sustainable agriculture and energy strategies:

Where does food in Middlebury dining halls come from?

Emeritus Professor John Elder reflects on his relationship to nature and place through the words of poets:

What happens when the oil party comes to an end?

Learn how two Vermont business people installing solar panels changes their environmental impact:

How do small choices you make everyday impact your carbon footprint?

A student takes a challenge to go vegetarian for a month to learn about the environmental impact of dietary choices:

Middlebury College President Ron Liebowitz proposes some sweeping changes to reach carbon neutrality:

 

A MiddLab Project

Framing and Blaming: The Role of Media in the 2005 Parisian Riots

Learn more about Political Science and Media Culture at Middlebury College.

The media played a significant role in the riots of Paris in 2005. This study examines the French and American media’s role in the formation of the identity of the rioters. The study draws on media content analysis based on news sources from the political right and left in each country. The results suggest two things. First, media on the political left, in both France and the United States, tends to frame the cause of the riots as a structural issue of exclusion while the political right tends to characterize the source of conflict as an agency issue of integration based on social differences. This can be explained by differences in political influences and underlying goals. Second, American media uses national and religious terms to describe the rioters’ identity while French media portrays them as a frustrated suburban youth. This reflects the respective historical contexts and political traditions.

People

Zoe Hamilton
Researcher

Erik Bleich
Sponsor & Associate Professor of Political Science

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This project examines the continued success of The Jerry Springer Show. Does the show promote the inclusion of the “other” in the American social order or is it a profit-seeking mechanism that proves only to further uphold a hierarchal American social structure in which some are excluded? By viewing scholarly articles on the talk show format, footage from The Jerry Springer Show, and other critical works in American Studies, I set out to prove that The Jerry Springer Show uses coded mechanisms to create the illusion of a democratic forum which promotes oppositional culture and challenges social norms. This, in turn creates a “participatory illusion” that veils the underlying profit-based motivations of the show. The goal is engaged viewers that question the motives of a seemingly un-refined format, “cheap amusements.” What is the show telling us about American society, and how is its shaping of perspective relevant to how we function as a society?

People

Carl Culicchia
Researcher

Michael Newbury
Sponsor & Professor of American Studies and English and American Literatures

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