A New Film: Mother Nature’s Child
Posted on 17 April 2011
I recently attended a screening of Mother Nature’s Child, shown at the Green Mountain Film Festival. A peak into the lives of some of America’s children of today, it’s a fascinating, frightening look at where technology is taking us—and what it means to grow up in a world where continuous, pervasive access to technology is both embraced and taken for granted. The film explores how our children are increasingly isolated from nature—one of the best and most effortless teachers we have at our disposal. It ventures to suggest that instead of confining your child to a sterile, carefully engineered playground, consider releasing them into the natural world! So severe is the separation of humans from their environment that a new phenomenon known as “nature deficit disorder” is now recognized. What kind of people are our children going to become, if we never allow them to get their nails dirty? How will our efforts to manufacture learning, even at the earliest ages, effect those we are trying to instruct? What kind of world leaders, thinkers and parents are produced by today’s accepted procedures for combining isolation with confinement and rigid structure? We have yet to find out, since this generation is really the first to grow up under such conditions (my generation—the wonder children of the 1980s!—was on the tail end of the old school, fancy free pre-lawsuit days). This film, made by Camilla Rockwell (my aunt!) explores these questions and more, infusing you with equal measures of happy, hippy-loving warmth and genuine anxiety for our future. Go see it! Find a screening near you or host your own by visiting the film website. And get outside!