As an Environmental Analysis and Media Studies major, I was very interested by López’s claim that all media are a form of environmental education. Instead of referring to dialogues about climate change, recycling, and sustainability, environmental education in this case refers to much more than the natural world. Lopez instead suggests that media mediates our interactions in the ‘built’ ecosystem, including social interactions, consumption, and culture. A key point I got from the chapter is that media tends to obscure distinct cultural traits. For example, the Shakira Pepsi ad can be interpreted as her shedding her culture and adopting her blonde hairstyle and English singing in order to fit into a more global dialogue and to appeal to a wider audience- essentially to make more money. This is not uncommon, and it seems that most media now moves away from showing what is distinct to depicting homogenous or universal narratives, symbols, and content. With an increasingly connected environment, this may make sense- but what is at stake? How can we ensure that media interactions acknowledge and encourage cultural diversity while simultaneously maintaining commercial successes?

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