Winter is coming…
…that’s what Game of Thrones announces in the very first episode. It is the motto of House Stark and one of the most quoted lines in the series. Fans and critics alike might connect this threat to climate change in the real world. However, despite its complexity and emphasis on world building, Game of Thrones is not a good model for responding to current debates on climate change, politics, and the ethics of survival because it unmoors the action from material conditions. All conflicts within the text are human-centered, even going so far as to personify the threats of Winter into the White walkers. My paper “A Virtual Winter: On the Absence of Ecology in Game of Thrones” explores how the climate problem of Game of Thrones only appears in order to disappear.
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Citation: “A Virtual winter: On the Absence of Ecology in Game of Thrones.” In Film Quarterly. 73:1 (2019): 42–53.