ANTONIO LÓPEZ

Putting the "eco" in media ecosystems

Greening the Media Literacy Ecosystem: Situating Media Literacy for Green Cultural Citizenship

For over a dozen years I have been a media literacy educator. I am also an environmentalist deeply committed to education for sustainability. As I define it in this dissertation, sustainability education encourages whole systems thinking that is ecological and participatory. Sustainability education promotes green cultural citizenship, which means embodying sustainable behaviors and cultural practices that shape and promote ecological values within the interconnected realms of society, economy and environment.

In my everyday practice I try to unite perspectives from the fields of media and sustainability education, but having a foot in both worlds has been a struggle. In the process of developing a middle way I have encountered resistance from both educational cultures.

As my interviews with nine key media literacy educators and analysis of seven major organizations in this study demonstrate, media literacy advocates sympathize with environmental issues, but the general practice of media literacy marginalizes ecological perspectives. Likewise, there are many in the field of environmental education that believes media and technology are anti-nature.

Mediating these differences to find common ground has become my life work and is the purpose of this dissertation.

Read this dissertation (PDF)

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