The students of HST 4380 Environmental Philosophy are invited to view the film
Nausicaa is the princess of the kingdom of the Valley of Wind, a coastal kingdom where the continual winds from the sea provide power (via windmills) and keep the fungi spores and poisonous gases from the Sea of Corruption at bay. Nausicaa explores the forests (wearing a gasmask) studying the plants and giant insects that live there trying to understand their meaning. But the uneasy peace is broken when Kushana, a princess from another kingdom, and her troops invade the Valley. Treaty obligations force Nausicaa and her people to join Kushana on her crusade, an attempt to revive one of the God Warriors from the past. Kushana's vision is to use the God Warrior to destroy the forests and retake those lands for the humans. Torn between following her duty as her people's leader and her obsession to prevent Kushana's war from spilling into her Valley, she stumbles onto the true secrets of the ecology of the poisonous forests and the insects.
Many of the themes you have studied in your class will be touched upon in this film. Although Nausicaa ultimately presents a simple view of nature and humans, "the good guys vs. the bad guys", it is an extremely powerful film. Miyazaki's manga (comic book) version continued for almost a decade after he completed the film version, and his story and themes became more complex. He worked some of these more complex and ambiguous views of humans and nature into his 1997 film Princess Mononoke which premiered in the US last fall and will be released on video this coming June. You are also invited to attend the talk by Dr. Susan Napier from UT- Austin at 12:30pm Wed. March 29th in MP 3.226 sponsored by A&H and the Gender Studies Work Group. Dr. Napier's talk is entitled [Super]girl Power: Women and Fantasy in the Worlds of Japanese Animation. This will be general talk for the public about the image and roles of women in Japanese animation. You are also invited to visit the AH 3300 class that evening at 7:00pm in the Galaxy Room in the Student Union. There Dr. Napier will be our guest speaker and will be talking specifically about Nausicaa.
For more information, please check
out the following webpages.
Nausicaa (the film):
Nausicaa (the manga):
http://www.viz.com/products/products.php?series_id=120 (updated 2007 link)
Background on AH 3300 and our study of Nausicaa:
Drs. Pam Gossin and Marc Hairston