Ecocinema, Slow Violence, and Environmental Ethics:

Death by Water




ecocinema, environmental ethics, water, slow violence, thing-power


In the Anthropocene epoch, slow violence triggered by human-caused environmental disaster is omnipresent across the globe. By forming an alternative media-spectatorship/readership in a media-saturated, fast-changing world, ecocinema can potentially help create an ecocentric environmental ethics, allowing us to question long-held notions of anthropocentrism, speciesism, and other ecological issues. Analyzing two documentaries, A Plastic Ocean and Silent River, this paper investigates the efficacy of the narratives of ecocinema as a powerful cultural and political text in making environmental slow violence perceptible to human imagination and in taking us one step further to environmental justice activism. The study will also examine the way in which water answers back to the environmental injustice triggered by humans through retaliation and revenge, appropriating and expanding Rob Nixon’s idea of slow violence and Jane Bennett’s concept of thing-power. Closely reading the portrayal of water as a dynamic entity in these two visual texts, this paper argues how the intrinsic value and the agency of water can reveal to humans the problems connected with their strong anthropocentric environmental ethics.




How to Cite

Mridha, S. (2021). Ecocinema, Slow Violence, and Environmental Ethics:: Death by Water. Crossings: A Journal of English Studies, 12, 108–122.