September 17, 2012

Ecoporn, A New Perspective

I found the "Ecoporn" article to be very interesting. Last semester I took "Rhetorical Criticism", and we analyzed slasher films and how they sexualized, and de-sexualized, the female heroines. I never would have thought to apply a similar analysis to pictures of nature.

While I'm not sure if Welling's argument is totally sound, I understand the main points. Untouched landscapes with "female" characteristics can be appealing to the unconscious concept of a "virgin female body". I'm not sure I understood what Welling's was claiming was so wrong about this similarity, other than women would probably be offended that they are being portrayed as animals. A problem I found, and I saw that someone discussed this below, is that Welling really only talked about how ecoporn depicted women sexually. When he brought up the image of the Florida Panther, which I can see vividly as it was my highschool mascot, big, buff and black, with its beating yellow eyes, if I had to guess what gender it was trying to sexualize, I would definitely say male. While landscapes may look more "female", it should also be considered that some of these rolling hills and venus fly traps really do look like female anatomy parts. I could also probably find many phallic symbols in ecoporn if I looked for them, which I feel like Welling didn't.

Despite the articles flaws, I found it a very entertaining and new perspective to read. I never considered the harmful affects of shows like "Blue Planet" and "Planet Earth". I'm still not sure I think they are as harmful as Welling claim's, but it is definitely a new perspective to take on.

1 comment:

lyzaakitten said...

I feel that you bring up an interesting point that the whole idea of ecoporn is based off of Kappeler's (1986) The Pornography of Representation, "ecoporn places viewers in the role of the 'male surveyor,' the all-seeing male subject to Nature's unseeing, aestheticized female object" (Welling 58). Under this definition it seems that ecoporn, like porn, centrally degrades women or depicts animals as female sexual beasts.

I believe that your thoughts on phallic objects does no qualify (definitionally) as ecopornography because it was meant to have a strong connection to "feminist critique not just of traditional pornography but of the patriarchal logic undergirding the linked exploitation of women and nature" (55).

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.