Jamaican filmmaker Esther Figueroa, whose earlier film Jamaica for Sale addressed the environmental costs of tourism development in Jamaica, has just released two environmental films available through youtube. Her documentaries on Caribbean environmental issued showcase the power of film to bring attention to the myriad environmental tragedies taking place everyday throughout the region.
[Many thanks for allowing us to post them here, Esther.]
Connecting the Caribbean with Seabird Conservation:
A 27 minute documentary about the need for seabird conservation in the Caribbean. Tansboundaried by nature, seabirds depend on a range of habitats and territories and connect the Caribbean. This documentary presents important information about seabirds, explores some of the threats they face and the efforts to deal with these threats across the Caribbean, and how The Nature Conservancy has tried to protect one of these bird species, the Masked Booby on the Pedro Cays. A film by Esther Figueroa, Vagabond Media, produced for The Nature Conservancy Jamaica Programme.
Protecting Pedro – South West Cay Fish Sanctuary:
An 18 minute documentary about the establishment of Jamaica’s first offshore fish sanctuary around the South West Cay in the Pedro Bank, Jamaica’s largest and most lucrative commercial fishery. Jamaica is the most over fished country in the Caribbean, this documentary explains the need for fish sanctuaries, how they function, and shows the arduous task of deploying the buoys that mark the sanctuary boundaries. The South West Cay Special Fisheries Conservation Area is co-managed by The Nature Conservancy which has been working with the Pedro Cays community for years to protect Pedro Bank’s natural resources. A film by Esther Figueroa, Vagabond Media, produced for The Nature Conservancy Jamaica Programme.
Esther Figueroa, PhD, is a Jamaican who was born and raised in Kingston, Jamaica at the University of the West Indies Mona campus where her father was professor of Education. Figueroa has been a resident of Hawai’i for over 20 years. She has lived and traveled in the Caribbean, Pacific, Europe, North America, Africa and Asia. Figueroa is a writer, media-maker, linguist, and educator. With degrees in History; East Asian Languages and Literatures; and Linguistics, Figueroa has taught, developed curriculum and trained students of all age groups in media through both popular and formal forms of education. In 1985, Figueroa co-founded Juniroa Productions, Inc., a woman-owned, independent media production company dedicated to community empowerment, local content-media and the perpetuation of native cultures. Figueroa has produced numerous documentaries, television series and specials, educational and training videos and multi-media. Her two most recent documentaries are “An Island Invaded” about World War II in Guam based on personal narratives of Guam residents, and “The Salt Song Trail – Bringing Creation Back Together” about the Southern Paiute’s attempts at revitalizing their salt songs as a way of healing and strengthening their communities. Figueroa is a published author in both academic writing and journalism. Her publications include: Sociolinguistic Metatheory (Pergammon 1994). At Home the Green Remains: Caribbean Writing in Honor of John Figueroa (Special Monograph Edition Caribbean Quarterly, Spring 2003). “Whale Rider” Film Review. Journal of the Contemporary Pacific. Fall 2004. And, “Rude Sounds – Kiss Teeth and the Negotiation of the Public Sphere”, in Susanne Mühleisen (ed) Politeness and Face in Caribbean Creoles. Benjamins, Amsterdam & Philadelphia. 2005.