Please review the movie Black Panther. In particular, focus on the environmental problem(s) presented and any proposed solution(s). Why is this a problem, is the solution viable, and are there comparable situations you know about or a personal experience that relates to the movie theme? What can we learn from the problem tackled by the movie?

In the movie Black Panther, the fictional African nation of Wakanda has remained isolated from, and largely invisible to, the rest of the world. Wakanda's abundance of a supernaturally powerful rare metal has allowed the country to prosper and become technologically and economically self-sufficient, without ever being integrated into world trade. One prime advantage of vibranium is its use in hovercraft, so that Wakanda has never needed to import oil or cars or build roads, which would harm the environment.

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One way to think about the environmental issues raised in the movie is how Wakanda is presented as a utopian ideal for other developing countries rich in natural resources to aspire to. The fictional Wakanda is situated between a number of actual nations, where disputes over access to natural riches...

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One way to think about the environmental issues raised in the movie is how Wakanda is presented as a utopian ideal for other developing countries rich in natural resources to aspire to. The fictional Wakanda is situated between a number of actual nations, where disputes over access to natural riches like precious minerals and metals, timber, and petroleum lead to civil wars and the unlawful trade of resources funds ongoing bloody factional conflicts. When you think about the movie, keep in mind the question of natural resource ownership and management and their role in international and domestic economic, technological, and social development.

The real-world example of most countries in the developing or post-colonial spheres has been authoritarian regimes or ineffective governments dependent on profits from these resources. This has led to their misappropriation and depletion, degrading to the environment and society. Think about the hopeful, empowering example Wakanda represents to these other countries in the region or around the world. The movie suggests that by emulating Wakanda's model of sound resource management and using its technological advantages for the benefit of society, its prosperity, security, and self-sufficiency could similarly be attained.

But the movie also presents the conflict facing the new king of Wakanda, under pressure to open the country up to international trade. Should he share Wakanda's precious resource with the world, in the spirit of peaceful cooperation, or should the resource be used to fuel a new world empire? The movie's plot certainly stretches plausibility, but the ethical and political questions it raises in regard to environmental and natural resource management are relevant to many resource-rich countries facing developmental challenges.

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