Promise Motivation: Films with Good News about Climate Change

Sabine von Mering

Schloss, O 138 (Fuchs-Festsaal)

Films about climate change, whether they present the reality of scientific scenarios or feature fictional dystopian futures, tend to be dark and gloomy, and viewers may feel discouraged from taking action. In this lecture, Professor Sabine von Mering will talk about films that take a different approach.

By analyzing the documentary films Demain (France, 2015),  Climate Warriors (Germany, 2017), 2040 (Australia, 2020), and Bidder 70 (USA, 2012) and the feature film How to Blow Up a Pipeline (2023), von Mering explores how films that prioritize “promise motivation”, i.e. a form of visualizing and storytelling that focuses on what can be done, they encourage viewers to become engaged. And promise motivation, it turns out, can take many different forms.

Sabine von Mering, Ph.D. is Director of the Center for German and European Studies, Professor of German, and Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies and a core member of the Environmental Studies Program at Brandeis University in Waltham, MA, USA.

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This event is open to everyone interested and will be held in German.