“A new book of essays on the meaning of Avatar, is a down-in-the-dirt wrestling match between those who resonate with it and those who hate a film that’s been labeled pro-civilization and anti-civilization, pro-science and anti-science, un-American…”
The book’s editor, Bron Taylor, writes: "In my own wrap up to the book I argue that, despite the many disagreements about the film, there are important truths in the film’s central themes, namely, that the spread of what we call civilization (first agricultural, later agro-industrial) has inexorably led to the destruction of both biological and cultural diversity. This is a reality that is seldom expressed in any nation today, for they are all wrapped up in pursuing economic growth with little concern for the damage this entails for peoples at the social margins let alone other species and environmental systems." I agree that the film plays an important role in a broader philosophical discussion and that some of the knee-jerk responses to its style and content have ignored how audiences actually responded to the film.
See on www.religiondispatches.org