NQF credits: 24 at HEQSF level 9


Dr Ian-Malcolm Rijsdijk

Entrance requirements

Acceptance for a Master’s programme.


This course examines several debates concerning the representation of the natural environment in narrative fiction and documentary film. Taking the ecocritical debate that has grown in scope and intensity in literary criticism since the early 1980s as a departure point, the course will investigate the value of this discourse and its applicability to films that either explicitly or implicitly use the natural environment as a key component of the film narrative. Equally important is the analysis of the films in terms of film language, and the extent to which film produces original representations of environmental debates that characterise the current age. In this second aspect of the course lies the history of the natural environment in film (its place in well- established and popular genres like the Western, for example), as well as the representation of people in relation to the nonhuman environment in environmental documentary. The course includes a practical exercise in which students will produce a visual artefact that applies the idea of the course to local situations.

DP requirements

Attendance at all classes; punctual submission of written work.


Seminar presentation 20%; short paper (2,500 words) 30%; long paper (4,000 words) 50%.