Film Screening, Reading and Lecture: Esther Figueroa

The University of Florida presents a Film Screening and Lecture Series with Esther Figueroa, Jamaican independent filmmaker, writer and environmental activist.

  • March 23-27 Screening of feature documentary Fly Me to the Moon (Esther Figueroa, 2019)
  • March 26 5:00PM EST Keynote “Environmental Injustice and Impossible Futures”
  • March 29 4:00PM EST Rare reading from environmental novel Limbo – A Novel About Jamaica

This event is free and open to the public. Register here:

FLY ME TO THE MOON (2019) is a feature documentary by Jamaican independent filmmaker Esther Figueroa, that takes us on a journey into the unexpected ways we are all connected on Planet Earth, by following aluminum – the metal of modernity – around the world and into space. We travel for over one hundred years, visiting places as far flung as the Moon, Jamaica, India, Suriname, Canada, Cuba, Japan, Hungary, Iceland, Australia, Vietnam, the United States of America, encountering along the way human triumphs, technological innovations, multiple wars, societal upheavals, environmental devastation. And in the urgent here and now of the climate crisis, the film challenges us to think about the consequences of our consumption, to reimagine the ways in which we live, and to change our material culture and political economy that is destroying the planet we all depend upon.

Our beliefs, the stories we tell ourselves, the decisions, and actions we take every day, define possible futures going forward. Greta Thunberg started Fridays for Future, based on her frustration and despair that her future, and the future of generations to come, is being made impossible by the “hopeful” empty promises of hypothetical distant climate targets full of loopholes and contradictions, “so we can continue to ignore the consequences of our actions, pretend everything is alright, and go back to sleep!” Human planetary dominance makes the life of millions of species impossible. Inequitable societies make peaceful futures impossible. A global political economy based on extraction, growth, and wealth, makes environmental justice impossible. In this lecture, Esther Figueroa will talk about environmental injustice not only from the perspective of humans, but non-human and planetary justice. She will challenge us to go beyond the impossible futures we are creating and instead change our narratives, change our imaginations, and change our actions to create credible futures for Planet Earth.

LIMBO – A NOVEL ABOUT JAMAICA (2014) Esther Figueroa
“In Limbo, Esther Figueroa deftly navigates between steamy romance, backdoor deals and dangerous plunges into the inferno of Jamaica’s environmental disasters. But the novel’s other side is its tender and evocative celebration of love, friendship, place and belonging. The author (like her heroine) emerges triumphant at the end of this breathtaking limbo dance. Despite its darker themes, the overriding humor and irreverence make for an enjoyable read. Limbo is a page-turner that will make you want to start all over again when you come to the end. In Esther Figueroa’s skillful hands, the tropical paradise is in Limbo but not yet lost. It should evoke in every reader a passionate desire to redeem what is left clinging to the exposed roots.”
—Olive Senior, author of Dancing Lessons

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