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Rational Disasters: Reasoning in new documentaries on living with nuclear power.

Hughes, HA (2014) Rational Disasters: Reasoning in new documentaries on living with nuclear power. In: Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS) Annual Conference 2014, 2014-03-19 - 2014-03-23, Seattle.

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Abstract

In one of his books on Gaia, James Lovelock argued that the best way to protect the rain forests of Latin America would be to store nuclear waste in them (Lovelock J. , 2006, p. 91). The ‘hungry farmers and developers’ would all abandon the area and leave it to the wildlife to flourish. It is not unusual for nuclear energy to provoke such unusual argumentative strategies, and it continues to have supporters despite disasters such as Chernobyl and Fukushima, with experts claiming that the general public has been led astray by a misleading campaign associating a low carbon source of energy with the technology of warfare. This paper explores two European films Pripyat (Geyrhalter, Austria, 1999), and Into Eternity (Madsen, Finland, 2008), which both present measured, controlled and reasonable accounts of arguments around nuclear energy production and its future. In different ways they both demonstrate the debates about everyday life and risk as it is lived in the present as well as the necessity of integrating the nuclear question into the debate about the future. The paper will take the case of nuclear energy as a means to explore how each film establishes a localized network of relationships between agents involved in the argumentation strategies as they are developed in audiovisual forms, including landscapes, local inhabitants, workers, flora and fauna, experts, and policy makers. Bibliography Geyrhalter, N. (Director). (1999). Pripyat [Motion Picture]. Austria. Latour, B. (1993). We have never been modern. (C. Porter, Trans.) Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press. Latour, B. (2004). Politics of nature: how to bring the sciences into democracy. (C. Porter, Trans.) Cambridge, Massachusetts; London, England: Harvard University Press. Lovelock, J. (2006). The Revenge of Gaia: Why the Earth if Fighting Back - and How We Can Still Save Humanity. London: Allen Lane. Madsen, M. (Director). (2008). Into Eternity: A Film for the Future [Motion Picture]. Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Italy. Mercier, H., & Sperber, D. (2011). Why do humans reason? Arguments for an argumentative theory. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 34, 57-11.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
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AuthorsEmailORCID
Hughes, HAUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date : 2014
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Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 28 Mar 2017 15:53
Last Modified : 28 Mar 2017 15:53
URI: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/id/eprint/806256

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