Avatar: Pro-Science; Anti-Intellectual. Discuss?
Is anyone not on Facebook? Well, just in case, I thought I’d re-post a discussion I and some friends have been having about our impressions of the roles of science and technology in the movie Avatar. I feel a little silly adding to all the attention that this movie is getting. In many ways it is kind of a crappy movie. Yet at the same time it is causing a lot of interesting discussion (for another example, see this very interesting discussion of the Noble (Sparkly) Savage). And of course, it was spectacular to watch.
This discussion began with me raising the question in the title: Avatar: Pro-Science; Anti-Intellectual? Here are some of the responses. (Warning: there are some gratuitously nerdy references here. Some people just can’t restrain themselves! Feel free to ignore.)
Zach: I like calling it “pro-science.” Avatar doesn’t care about nature because it’s important in and of itself; it cares about nature because lifeforms on Pandora have established a complex neural network that can host entire lived identities, exudes a power that allows mountains to fly, and that has a tangible social function through the ‘built-in USB connections that exist in every Na’Vi and every animal. This hippie lovefest is based on tangible scientific (in the story) phenomena.