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Janet Walker

Prof. Dr. Janet Walker

Carson Fellow

Janet Walker is a professor of film and media studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she is also affiliated with the Carsey-Wolf Center’s Environmental Media Initiative. A specialist in documentary film, trauma and memory, and media and environment, her six books include Trauma Cinema: Documenting Incest and the Holocaust (University of California Press 2005), Documentary Testimonies: Global Archives of Suffering (with Bhaskar Sarkar, Routledge 2010) and, most recently, Sustainable Media: Critical Approaches to Media and Environment (with Nicole Starosielski, Routledge 2016). She was founding co-chair with Hunter Vaughan of the Media and the Environment Scholarly Interest Group of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies and has recently received, with several other University of California, Santa Barbara co-PIs, a Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminar grant for a collaborative project on energy justice. Her current research involves the development of a cartographically attuned analytic for the study of documentary film and other geolocational technologies.

RCC Research Project: Development of an International, Transdisciplinary Journal of Media + Environment

Adrian Ivakhiv, James Schwoch, Hunter Vaughan, and Janet Walker are a four-person team collaborating on the development of Media+Environment, a refereed, open-source, multidisciplinary journal of ecomedia research. The journal promotes the publication of work exploring and analyzing the myriad ways that media and environments influence, shape, and inhabit one another. The journal is committed to deepening our understanding of media’s implications in environmental resource extraction and degradation, analyzing mediated representations of environments and climates in stasis and in flux, and exploring the possibilities media hold for new ways of knowledge and sustainable alternatives. The journal promotes and helps shape a growing dialogue among the emergent global and interdisciplinary communities of researchers and acts as a catalyst for decision making and action: a bridge between theory and practice that links scholars to activists and policymakers.


Selected Publications:

  • with Nicole Starosielski, eds. Sustainable Media: Critical Approaches to Media and Environment. London: Routledge, 2016.
  • “Projecting Sea Level Rise: Documentary Film and Other Geolocative Media.” In A Companion to Contemporary Documentary Film, edited by Alexandra Juhasz and Alisa Lebow. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell, 2015.
  • “Moving Home: Documentary Film and Other Remediations of Post-Katrina New Orleans.” In Moving Environments: Affect, Emotion, Ecology and Film, edited by Alexa Weik von Mossner. Ontario, Canada: Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2014.
  • “Eavesdropping in The Cove: Interspecies Ethics, Public and Private Space, and Trauma Under Water.” In Studies in Documentary Film 7, no. 3 (2013): 209–32.
  • with David Gray and Jade Petermon. “Mapping Documentary: A Roundtable with Filmmaker Ido Haar and Film and Media Studies Scholar Janet Walker in Conversation with David Gray and Jade Petermon.” Media Fields Journal: Critical Explorations in Media and Space, no. 3 (2011).
  • “Rights and Return: The Perils of Situated Testimony after Katrina.” In Documentary Testimonies: Global Archives of Suffering, edited by Bhaskar Sarkar and Janet Walker. London: Routledge/AFI Film Readers, 2010.