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Article

Tale(s) of a Forest—Re-Creation of a Primeval Forest in Three Environmental Narratives

1
Department of Music, Art and Culture Studies, University of Jyväskylä, 40014 Jyväskylän yliopisto, Finland
2
School of Resource Wisdom, University of Jyväskylä, 40014 Jyväskylän yliopisto, Finland
3
Department of Biological and Environmental Science, University of Jyväskylä, 40014 Jyväskylän yliopisto, Finland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Arts 2020, 9(4), 125; https://doi.org/10.3390/arts9040125
Received: 29 October 2020 / Revised: 23 November 2020 / Accepted: 26 November 2020 / Published: 1 December 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Art of Adaptation in Film and Video Games)
We analyze three environmentally conscious works that are concerned with the state of Finnish forests: the documentary film Metsän tarina/Tale of a Forest (2012), the book with the same name (2013) and the series of short documentaries Tarinoita metsästä/Tales from the Forest (2013). By combining methods from arts research and ecology, we ask how the narratives adapt material from nature photography. The film and book present mythic stories and old Finnish beliefs about forests. They also contain references to cultural memory. Additionally, the biodiversity on display reflects a conventional practice to exhibit large or charismatic species. However, the ecological message remains only implicit, expressed through aesthetic choices rather than information about natural processes. Overall, we suggest that adaptation in these narratives can be understood as an artistic process of recycling and referencing and as a way to reconnect with cultural memory and nature. As such, it can enhance relationships with nature and awareness of conservation needs. However, we ask whether the past-oriented strategy is a politically effective way to activate a connection with nature in modern Finland, where discussions about environmental problems are closely connected to heated debates about forestry. View Full-Text
Keywords: Tale of a Forest; adaptation; biodiversity; documentary; ecocriticism; environmental narrative; forest; nature photography; nostalgia; species Tale of a Forest; adaptation; biodiversity; documentary; ecocriticism; environmental narrative; forest; nature photography; nostalgia; species
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MDPI and ACS Style

Hiltunen, K.; Björklund, H.; Nurmesjärvi, A.; Purhonen, J.; Rainio, M.; Sääskilahti, N.; Vallius, A. Tale(s) of a Forest—Re-Creation of a Primeval Forest in Three Environmental Narratives. Arts 2020, 9, 125. https://doi.org/10.3390/arts9040125

AMA Style

Hiltunen K, Björklund H, Nurmesjärvi A, Purhonen J, Rainio M, Sääskilahti N, Vallius A. Tale(s) of a Forest—Re-Creation of a Primeval Forest in Three Environmental Narratives. Arts. 2020; 9(4):125. https://doi.org/10.3390/arts9040125

Chicago/Turabian Style

Hiltunen, Kaisa, Heidi Björklund, Aino Nurmesjärvi, Jenna Purhonen, Minna Rainio, Nina Sääskilahti, and Antti Vallius. 2020. "Tale(s) of a Forest—Re-Creation of a Primeval Forest in Three Environmental Narratives" Arts 9, no. 4: 125. https://doi.org/10.3390/arts9040125

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