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Nature: A Tool of SocietyWilliam Cronon says in the Epilogue of Natureis Metropolis, iMuch as I say I love inaturei that word usually remains an abstraction in my daily lifeoa non-urban quality of aesthetic or sacred beauty to be looked at and iappreciated,i not the gritty web of material connections that feed, clothe, shelter, and cleanse me and my community.i (Cronon 384). This can be said for most of the population of urban areas. It is this ambiguous view of nature that makes us susceptible to otheris interpretations of nature. This susceptibility makes nature a powerful force in society. This is especially evident in advertisements, which mold nature into the image that is favorable to portray the product being advertised.

The Sony advertisement from Esquire magazine is for the Wega flat screen television, and is a good example of how advertisements use nature to sell a product. This ad shows two very contrasting images, one of the black and white desert, and the other of the television set showing pictures of children playing in the water of a fire hydrant. The use of the television to frame the picture of the children shows very distinctly that these are two very separate and different images, because as Leonardo da Vinci said iThere are no lines in naturei. In this ad through the use of colors, or the lack there of, this cultural icon is shown to be more favorable than the image of nature.The ad offers the viewer a sense of escape from the dull, monotone world outside by offering a more vibrant, playful world experienced through television. While the link between the images shown in the ad and the offer made by the advertisement seems very surreal, it is a natural link. The reasoning behind this link as being …

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…rural hinterland. We fool ourselves if we think we can choose between them, for the green lake and the orange cloud are creatures of the same landscape. We can only take tehm together and in making the journey between them, find a way that does justice to them bothi (Cronon 385). According to Cronon the nature-culture dichotomy that we believe in is incorrect, because nature is just as much a part of culture as culture is a part of nature.Works CitedCronon, William – short selection from Epilogue, Nature’s Metropolis Norton 1991 pp.384-5.

Marlboro Lights. iEsquirei January 2001. back cover.

Nash, Roderick – ‘Old World Roots of Opinion,’ Ch 1 from Wilderness and the AmericanMind 1982 Yale Univ Press pp. 8-22.

Sony Wega. iEsquirei December 2000. pgs. 17-18.

Timberland. iMaximi December 2000. pg.

Yahoo! Email. iEsquirei January 2001.

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