The third eco_media symposium will be held online on Monday 30 August 2021. We look forward to welcoming you to our virtual event.

  • The schedule for the day can be viewed here.
  • Abstracts for confirmed presentations can be viewed here.

Opening Provocation: Three Digressions (on the way to eco-aesthetic politics)

Professor Sean Cubitt, University of Melbourne

Three journeys through three cases – a historical mermaid, some angels and a cat – concerning encounters that change what it means to be human. Sensational disgust, terror, even the uncanny sensation of being watched belong at the margins of human systems and certainties, margins that are permeable. Unlike more familiar occasions when dirt or noise punctuate the continuum of history or the reliable functioning of technologies, mermaids, angels and the cat in A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night can break apart history and technical systems. Contemplating the role of imagination and wonder in ecocritical aesthetic politics.


Sean Cubitt is Professor of Screen Studies at the University of Melbourne. Cubitt’s appointment at Melbourne follows previous appointments at Goldsmiths, University of London and the University of Waikato.

Cubitt has published widely in the history, philosophy and theory of media, with books including The Practice of LightThe Cinema Effect, and Videography: Video Media as Art and Culture. More recent research sees an interest in the intersections of media representations and technologies with ecological concerns.

Steering Committee:

Daniel Binns — Lecturer, Media — RMIT University

Djoymi Baker — Lecturer, Media & Cinema — RMIT University

Heather Jarvis — Lecturer, Media — RMIT University

Rebecca Najdowski — Lecturer, Photography — RMIT University

Logan Ramsay — Doctoral Candidate, Media & Communication — RMIT University

We’re delighted to be working with the following partners:

Intellect Books & Journals are our publishing partner. Full details here.

We are excited to partner once more with Environmental Film Festival Australia, a 100% volunteer-run organisation that showcases groundbreaking cinema, traversing the relationship between humans and their environments, challenging the way people think about the natural world, and inspiring us all to discuss, explore and act on important environmental issues. More info about upcoming events on the EFFA website.

Atlasshorts are our streaming partner. Creative works screened at the eco_media symposium have a distribution option via the Atlasshorts platform. Atlasshorts is a streaming platform offering the world’s best short films, media and visual art via your library to support students, academics and library members reach their full creative potential.

The AFI Research Collection is a specialist public film and television industry resource housing materials encompassing global cinema and television, including press clippings, books, journals, film and television scripts, policy reports, film promotional material, and film festival catalogues. For more info, to search the catalogue or to chat to the outstanding AFI librarians, visit the AFIRC website or check out their Instagram.

Screen & Sound Cultures, at RMIT University, is a collaborative research group for scholars and creative practitioners working across the fields of screen studies, music, filmmaking, media history, curatorial practice, sound design, online media and a range of other interconnected fields. It foregrounds and fosters cross-disciplinary research, local and international collaborations, industry and community links, and the nexus between teaching and research.