Films at the fault line of ‘deep’ and ‘bright’ greens in the environmental movement

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


In this article, I review two films challenging the technological solutions and assumptions of ‘bright green’ environmentalism, Planet of the Humans and Bright Green Lies. I explain the ways these films showcase a ‘deep green’ challenge to what is charged as magical thinking in proposals for renewable energy transition. I summarize how filmmakers explore evidence that calls into question the potential for new forms of industrial expansion to save a biome in crisis. I consider the arguments raised in each film surrounding biological limits to extraction and growth. And I discuss the importance and value of exposing students to strong counter arguments to paradigmatic proposals for energy transition in a way that invokes a critical discussion of knowledge production and application.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)745-756
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Sociology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Bright Green Lies
  • Planet of the Humans
  • energy transition
  • extractive politics
  • ‘bright green’ environmentalism
  • ‘deep green’ environmentalism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


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