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Celebrities celebrifying nature: the discursive construction of the human-nature relationship in the ‘Nature Is Speaking’ campaign
School of Education and Communication, Jönköping University, Jönköping, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1011-7726
Örebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9274-3634
2019 (English)In: Celebrity Studies, ISSN 1939-2397, E-ISSN 1939-2400Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

The nature conservation movement frequently relies on the lustre of celebrity personae to reach out with its message. As role models, celebrities exercise invisible power by representing certain norms and ideas while themselves being subordinate to social structures and discourses. Examining the case of Conservation International’s campaign, Nature Is Speaking, and guided by the methodological framework of multimodal critical discourse analysis, this study examines how celebrities, in alliance with the conservation movement, (re)produce certain ideas about nature and the human-nature relationship when discursively ‘celebrifying’ nature – turning nature into a ‘celebrity by association’ – by lending their celebrity properties to nature as represented in the campaign. The study identifies three ways of representing nature that the celebrification of nature produces in the campaign: nature as (1) eternal and magnificent, (2) caring and providing, and (3) mighty but delicate. Together these representations constitute a discourse that reproduces certain naturalised values and worldviews connected to the human-nature relationship. The paper concludes that the diversification of celebrity into new fields such as the natural is constitutive of the overall celebritisation of society, and it discusses the implications of the celebrification of nature in terms of reproduction of the human-nature dichotomy and obscuration of the structural aspects of environmental degradation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2019.
Keywords [en]
Environmental communication; multimodal critical discourse analysis; celebrity; nature conservation; nature representations
National Category
Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
Research subject
Sociology; Media and Communication Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-74761DOI: 10.1080/19392397.2019.1626749OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-74761DiVA, id: diva2:1328149
Available from: 2019-06-20 Created: 2019-06-20 Last updated: 2019-06-25Bibliographically approved

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Uggla, Ylva

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