That's All Folks?: Ecocritical Readings of American Animated Features

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U of Nebraska Press, 2011 - Performing Arts - 283 pages
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Although some credit the environmental movement of the 1970s, with its profound impact on children?s television programs and movies, for paving the way for later eco-films, the history of environmental expression in animated film reaches much further back in American history, as That?s All Folks? makes clear.
Countering the view that the contemporary environmental movement?and the cartoons it influenced?came to life in the 1960s, Robin L. Murray and Joseph K. Heumann reveal how environmentalism was already a growing concern in animated films of the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s. From Felix the Cat cartoons to Disney?s beloved Bambi to Pixar?s Wall-E and James Cameron?s Avatar, this volume shows how animated features with environmental themes are moneymakers on multiple levels?particularly as broad-based family entertainment and conveyors of consumer products. Only Ralph Bakshi?s X-rated Fritz the Cat and R-rated Heavy Traffic and Coonskin, with their violent, dystopic representation of urban environments, avoid this total immersion in an anti-environmental consumer market.
Showing us enviro-toons in their cultural and historical contexts, this book offers fresh insights into the changing perceptions of the relationship between humans and the environment and a new understanding of environmental and animated cinema.
  

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Contents

A Foundation for Contemporary Envirotoons
1
Nature with or without Us
29
What Disney Does for the Animal Rights Movement
49
A Modernist Look at Urban Nature
79
A Demonstration of Interdependence?
91
Where Technology Serves and Destroys
115
Blurring Boundaries between Human and Nonhuman Nature
135
Evolution Outplays Disneys Binaries
161
Escape or Interdependence in Over the Hedge and Bee Movie
183
Moving between Environmental Adaptation and Sentimental Nostalgia
201
The Continuing Influence of Human Organismic Economic and Chaotic Approaches to Ecology
229
Animations Movement to Green?
241
Filmography
251
Works Cited
265
Index
277
Copyright

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About the author (2011)

Robin L. Murray is a professor of English at Eastern Illinois University. Joseph K. Heumann is a professor emeritus at Eastern Illinois University. They are the coauthors of Ecology and Popular Film: Cinema on the Edge.

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