December 5th, 2007
Dear GAIA friends,
I am happy to announce the launch of a new film which some of you saw at the GAIA Global Meeting in Spain this fall, The Story of Stuff. Much of what I include in the film is based on experiences I shared with or things I learned from GAIA members around the world, so I offer you my sincere thanks.
You can see the film at www.storyofstuff.com
Here is a little description of the film:
All the stuff in our lives, beginning from the extraction of the resources to make it, through its production, sale, use and disposal, affects communities at home and abroad, yet most of this is hidden from view. The Story of Stuff is a 20-minute, fast-paced, fact-filled look at the underside of our production and consumption patterns. The Story of Stuff exposes the connections between a huge number of environmental and social issues and
calls for all of us coming together to create a more sustainable and just world. It'll teach you something. It'll make you laugh, and it just may change the way you look at all the stuff in your life forever.
In addition to the film itself, there are many additional resources on the website which may be of use. There is a footnoted script, a glossary, and a great list of recommended reading. There are also materials for groups to use if they want to show The Story of Stuff in classrooms, church groups, community meetings, workshops - anywhere. There is a downloadable and printable poster advertising screenings, a printable invitation for house parties, a guide to having house parties, and some suggestions for group
discussions and activities after viewing the film.
The film is very much geared towards people new to these issues so is an introductory film.
The film does not cover every issue related to waste, of course. If offers a big picture critique of the systemic problems with our current patterns of extraction, production, distribution, consumption and disposal. My hope is that many of you will find it useful in your organizing and outreach efforts to explain the bigger picture, to inspire people to think deeply, and then you can follow up by explaining why your particular point of intervention is
helpful and how it relates to other issues. I believe that the more we can see beyond our issue-silos to connect with others working on related issues, then the more our collective work will address the fundamental systemic causes of these problems and build power towards really transforming this system to be one that prioritizes environmental sustainability AND social justice.
My hope is that people will watch the film because it is entertaining, and then will be inspired to get involved.
Hope you all like it! If you do, please forward it to friends. And if you want to put a link to it from your website, or announce it in any newsletter or anything, there are some cute graphics available for you to use as much as you want on the website. We encourage people to watch and download it for free, share it, copy it, and show it as much as you want for free, as long you're using it for educational, not commercial, purposes. Also, if you want to share some comments, please post a message on the blog. I think it would be great to hear from people around the world to incorporate perspectives from many countries into the discussion. Thanks in advance for sharing your thoughts there.
Again, many thanks for all that I have learned from so many of you this past decade of working together.