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Naturligt farligt: Hur visualiseringar av klimatförändringar är laddade med tecken och känslor
Örebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences.
2010 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The purpose of this thesis was to examine the relationship between feelings and visualizations of climate change. A case study was done on visualizations of climate change from a web page concerning climate change published by the Swedish newspaper Expressen and from the American photographer Gary Braasch’s web page “World view of global warming”. The thesis is based on the article ”Emotional anchoring and objectification in the media reporting on climate change” by Birgitta Höijer. I have been aiming to understand the feelings of fear, hope, guilt, compassion and nostalgia through semiotic theories of icon, index and symbol.

Previous research has proven the difficulties in bringing the issue of climate change up on the public agenda – which is connected to the difficulties of visualizing climate change. The nature of climate change being slow and hard to spot on an individual level has been highlighted as a cause of both of these difficulties. Pictures and photos have in this thesis been seen as the “interface” between science and the public – and hence decoders of the science of climate change. Höijer’s article about feelings has been used to understand this process of decoding.

The results show that the analyzed material could be linked to and described by the semiotic theories of icon, index and symbol. The emotional anchoring found in the material and the semiotic application have been shown to work complementarily with each other, leading to a broader understanding of the material’s relationship to social cognitions. The results further demonstrated that context is essential in some of the analyzed visualizations of climate change. Generic pictures found in the material could have been regarded as icon, index or symbol of other messages – but is through its contexts anchored with feelings, and becomes visualizations of climate change. The analysis also suggests that if icons of nature could be connected with feelings – so could nature itself. The consequences are speculated to lead to objectification of nature and ecophobia. By objectifying nature and using generic pictures, the material’s relationship to the concepts of “truth” and “myth” is questioned.

In conclusion, understanding of the analyzed material is advantageously achieved through complementary use of Höijers emotional categories and the semiotic theories of icon, index and symbol.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. , 41 p.
Keyword [en]
climate change, nature, environment, climate, internet, media, Expressen, Gary, Braasch, visualization, images, photographs, emotions, feelings, fear, hope, guilt, compassion, nostalgia, truth, myth, semiotics, archetypes, icons, index, symbol, Höijer, iconographic, sign, interpretant, object, decoding, generic, anchoring, objectification, ecophobia, context
Keyword [sv]
klimatförändringar, natur, miljö, klimat, internet, media, Expressen, Gary, Braasch, visualisering, bilder, foton, känslor, rädsla, hopp, skuld, medlidande, nostalgi, sanning, myt, bildsemiotik, semiotik, urbilder, ikon, index, symbol, Höijer, ikonologisk, ikonografisk, preikonografisk, tecken, interpretant, objekt, avkodning, generiska, förankring, objektifiering, ekofobi, kontext
National Category
Media and Communications
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-9187ISRN: ORU-HUS/MKV-GK-2010/0008--SEOAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-9187DiVA: diva2:288087
Presentation
(English)
Uppsok
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2010-03-17 Created: 2010-01-20 Last updated: 2010-04-19Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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