Many people believe that technology and more renewable energy are all that is needed to solve our environmental problems. However, history has shown us that technology advances and becomes more efficient, which leads to a reduction in the amount of environmental problems we face. Consume more. This has created environmental problems like plastic waste, water pollution, and mining for finite resources.
We need to address cultural values that relate to consumption in order to effectively tackle the climate and biodiversity crisis. The role models that are displayed on our screens and in our books is an important aspect of this.
Role models are often found amongst these people. famous peopleFrom Sir David Attenborough, his love for nature, to Lord Sugar and his private plane, But fictional role models have a greater impact on cultural values than their more obvious counterparts.
Research into the expanding field of educational entertainment has shown that people who are immersed within stories are more open to the persuasive messages contained in them. This is called “The Embedded Story Effect”. Narrative transportation. It also shows that fictional role modelsCultural impacts can be both positive and negative.
Cognitive science research supports role models’ importance in learning and processing information. Exemplar theoryRole models can influence values and behaviours in ways other than telling people what they should do. This is according to research. Green characters are often portrayed as irritating, bizarre or oddWe need to normalize green behaviors as a way for life.
At the same time, many popular TV shows such as “And Just Like That…,” “Riviera” and “Emily in Paris” exemplify role models whose lifestyles of gas-guzzling cars, private jets and fast fashion are destroying our beautiful planet.
The title character of “Emily In Paris” is American, quirky, and fun. She is a luxury marketer and invents innovative ways to get people to purchase the latest fashion. She changes her outfit every day, but it’s not clear how she stores so many clothes inside her tiny apartment in Paris.
The real world, fashion industryIt emits twice as much Carbon emissionsThere are more Aviation and shipping combinedThe polluting effects of pesticides in cotton, chemical in dyes, and micro-plastics on clothes can lead to large amounts of water pollution. fast-fashionThe trend towards decreased garment use and increased clothing production continues unabated.
Emily could get her clothes through fashion swaps Vintage shopsUse her marketing skills to highlight all of the New appsOpportunities and how to Rent, Borrow, ShareBuy or Sell Second hand. The writers choose to show us the same old trope: girls shopping, walking home with plastic-coated single-use bags and carrying multiple items of clothing that will only be worn once or twice. She could easily be written to care less about the environment without sacrificing the glamour of Paris, the sexy chefs and the fun clothes.
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Evidence is mounting that role models who are green can have a positive impact on behaviour. 250,000 people pledged to take positive action following the Netflix film “Don’t Look Up”. Website.
These are not final results, but pledges. Study“Reactions of readers to my eco-themed romance novel” Habitat Man“” indicates that embedding green solutions into a story for a mainstream audience leads to actual changes in behaviour, without compromising its storyline.
The main character Tim (aka Habitat Man), gives tips on how to grow wildlife while the romance unfolds in the garden where the love interest is located. The mystery of the discovery of a body in a pond while digging is a great opportunity to highlight the advantages of natural burials.
One participant said that they had changed the will to include a green funeral after having read the book. Habitat Man is Highly ratedBy both mainstream readers and green activists, it shows that stories can be both compelling and can inspire sustainable behaviour change.
There are also initiatives such as the Green Stories writing competitionsThese encourage writers to create more sustainable role models. The website suggests Transformative Sustainability SolutionsWriters can embed sharing economies and personal carbon allowances into their stories. Bafta’s and this work are being expanded into video. AlbertInitiative, through a ConcurrenceTo create five minute videos that highlight fictional characters’ impact role-modelsIt calls out characters and writers who implicitly encourage excessive consumption as a goal.
I believe that in 10 years when climate change and increasing waste are unavoidable, we’ll find the mindless consumption of shows like “Emily In Paris” disturbing. We don’t have ten more years. Let’s get them out there and encourage producers and writers to create more planet-friendly characters that we can all emulate and enjoy.
Positive fictional role models are the missing ingredient in tackling climate change (2022, February 24).
Retrieved 24 February 2022
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