Macquarie University
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On elemental imagination and the opening of filmworlds: a film-philosophical exploration of the ecological potential of cinematic ethics

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posted on 2022-07-21, 04:28 authored by Ludo Beau De RooLudo Beau De Roo


In the interdisciplinary context of phenomenological aesthetics and ecocinema theory (environmental film theory), I propose a film-philosophical theory of the ‘natural elements’ earth, air, water, and fire. The aim is investigating how these elements matter in (a) creating an expressive ‘filmworld’ that (b) immerses the spectator on a phenomenological level; cinema ‘elemental imagination’ can thus (c) re-sensitize the spectator’s awareness of the life-sustaining importance of these elements. Among the first in the field to explore cinema’s representation of these natural elements in relation to cinematic imagination, this thesis develops the notions ‘elemental imagination’ and ‘filmworld’ to illuminate cinema’s ecological potential how the mediated experience of film can bring us closer, and relate us back to the natural world.


Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Of elemental imagination -- Chapter 2 Imagination in the cinema -- Chapter 3 Pushing upstream -- Chapter 4 On filmworlds -- Chapter 5 Towards an ethics of filmworlds -- Chapter 6 From the fourfold -- Sources


Includes bibliographical references (pages 217‐242)

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis PhD


Thesis (PhD), Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts, Department of Philosophy, 2020

Department, Centre or School

Department of Philosophy

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Robert Sinnerbrink


Copyright disclaimer: Copyright Ludo Beau de Roo 2020.




1 online resource (xix, 243pages)