China´s Involvement in Jamaica. Socio-ecological Consequences of a Huge Infrastructural Project, An Interview with the Filmmaker Esther Figueroa about her Film “I Live for Art – An Ecocide Romance”

Anne Tittor (Bielefeld University) & Esther Figueroa (Vagabond Media, Jamaica)

Abstract

Esther Figueroa is a Jamaican independent filmmaker, writer and linguist. She has degrees in History, East Asian Languages and Literature (Chinese) and a PhD in Linguistics. With over thirty years of media making including television programming, documentaries, educational videos, multimedia and feature film, her work focuses on the environment, local knowledge, indigenous cultures, social injustice and community empowerment. Her films include the award-winning feature documentary “Jamaica for Sale” (2009). Her publications include “Sociolinguistic Metatheory” (1994) and her recently published environmental novel about Jamaica, Limbo (2014). Anne Tittor interviewed Esther Figueroa in October 2015 via e-mail about the twelve-minute video “I Live for Art – An Ecocide Romance”, released in 2013. The film is an experimental short about the Palisadoes Shoreline Protection and Rehabilitation Works Project in Jamaica – and how the government and a Chinese company involved in the project try to use environmental and developmental arguments to defend large-scale infrastructure construction that is destroying the local ecosystem.

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