Climate Fiction and Cultural Analysis argues that the popularity of the term "climate fiction" has paradoxically exhausted the term’s descriptive power and that it has developed into a black box containing all kinds of fictions which depict climatic events and has consequently lost its true significance.
Aware of the prospect of ecological collapse as well as our apparent inability to avert it, we face geophysical changes of drastic proportions that severely challenge our ability to imagine the consequences. This book argues that this crisis of imagination can be partly relieved by climate fiction, which may help us comprehend the potential impact of the crisis we are facing. Strictly assigning "climate fiction" to fictions that incorporate the climatological paradigm of anthropogenic global warming into their plots, this book sets out to salvage the term’s speculative quality. It argues that climate fiction should be regarded as no less than a vital supplement to climate science, because climate fiction makes visible and conceivable future modes of existence within worlds not only deemed likely by science, but which are scientifically anticipated.
Focusing primarily on English and German language fictions, Climate Fiction and Cultural Analysis shows how Western climate fiction sketches various affective and cognitive relations to the world in its utilization of a small number of recurring imaginaries, or imagination forms.
This book will be of great interest to students and scholars of ecocriticism, the environmental humanities, and literary and culture studies more generally.
Introduction: The Birth of a New Type of Fiction
A Brief History of Global Warming
What is Climate Fiction?
The Context of this Book
Presentation of Content
Chapter 1: Cultural Hermeneutics
Hermeneutics and Preunderstanding
Approaching Climate Fiction
Chapter 2: The Social Collapse
From the Broken Social Contract to Climate War
The Uncanny as a Mood
The Uncanny Relation to the World
Chapter 3: The Judgment
The Judgment in Cultural History
The Judgment in Climate Fiction
Serres, Latour, and the Imagination Form
Another Uncanny Relation to the World
The Judgment as a Denial of Responsibility
Chapter 4: The Conspiracy
The Conspiracy in Cultural History
The Arrival of the Super Computer
Crichton and The Conspiracy
The Suspicious Relation to the World
Chapter 5: The Loss of Wilderness
The Loss of Wilderness in Cultural History
The Destructiveness of Humanity
Another Suicidal Ice Lover
Heidegger and the Imagination Form
The Loving Relation to the World
Chapter 6: The Sphere
The Sphere in Cultural History
Sloterdijk and the Imagination Form
The Anthropotechnical Relation to the World
Chapter 7: The Birth of a New Perspective
Beyond the Grid of the Imagination Forms
Two Functions of Climate Fiction
The urgency of the next great extinction impels us to evaluate environmental crises as sociogenic. Critiques of culture have a lot to contribute to the endeavour to remedy crises of culture, drawing from scientific knowledge but adding to it arguments about agency, community, language, technology and artistic expression. This series aims to bring to consciousness potentialities that have emerged within a distinct historical situation and to underscore our actions as emergent within a complex dialectic among the living world.
It is our understanding that studies in literature, culture and media can add depth and sensitivity to the way we frame crises; clarifying how culture is pervasive and integral to human and non-human lives as it is the medium of lived experience. We seek exciting studies of more-than-human entanglements and impersonal ontological infrastructures, slow and public media, and the structuring of interpretation. We seek interdisciplinary frameworks for considering solutions to crises, addressing ambiguous and protracted states such as solastalgia, anthropocene anxiety, and climate grief and denialism. We seek scholars who are thinking through decolonization and epistemic justice for our environmental futures. We seek sensitivity to iterability, exchange and interpretation as wrought, performative acts.
Routledge Environmental Literature, Culture, Media provides accessible material to broad audiences, including academic monographs and anthologies, fictocriticism and studies of creative practices. We invite you to contribute to innovative scholarship and interdisciplinary inquiries into the interactive production of meaning sensitive to the affective circuits we move through as experiencing beings.