(Eco)Anxiety in Nuclear Holocaust Fiction and Climate Fiction : Doomsday Clock Narratives book cover
1st Edition

(Eco)Anxiety in Nuclear Holocaust Fiction and Climate Fiction
Doomsday Clock Narratives

  • Available for pre-order on June 30, 2023. Item will ship after July 21, 2023
ISBN 9781032468921
July 21, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
192 Pages

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Book Description

(Eco)Anxiety in Nuclear Holocaust Fiction and Climate Fiction: Doomsday Clock Narratives demonstrates that disaster fiction—nuclear holocaust and climate change alike—allows us to unearth and anatomize contemporary psychodynamics, and enables us to identify pre-traumatic stress as the common denominator of seemingly unrelated types of texts. These Doomsday Clock Narratives argue that earth’s demise is soon and certain. They are set after some catastrophe and depict people waiting for an even worse catastrophe to come. References to geology are particularly important—in descriptions of the landscape, the emphasis falls on waste and industrial bric-a-brac, which is seen through the eyes of a future, post-human archaeologist. Their protagonists have the uncanny feeling that the countdown has already started, and they are coping with both traumatic memories and pre-traumatic stress. Readings of novels by Walter M. Miller, Nevil Shute, John Christopher, J.G. Ballard, George Turner, Paolo Bacigalupi, Maggie Gee, Ruth Ozeki and Yoko Tawada demonstrate that the authors are both indebted to a century-old tradition and inventively looking for new ways of expressing the Pre-TSS common in contemporary society. This book is written for an academic audience (postgraduates, researchers and academics) specializing in British Literature, American Literature, and Science Fiction Studies.

Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION: Doomsday Clock Narratives

Chapter I Anticipating Disasters: Anxieties and Traumas

- Eco-Anxiety and Pre-Traumatic Stress Syndrome

- Pre-Traumatic Stress: the Psychoanalytical Perspective

Chapter II Writing about Disasters: Metaphors and Parables

- Geological Metaphors

- Parables of Nature and Symbolic Timepieces

Chapter III Disaster Fantasies: Nuclear Holocaust Fiction and Climate Fiction

- Disaster Story Tradition

- Nuclear Holocaust Fiction

- Climate Fiction

Chapter IV 'Maybe it's a period of grace': Mid-Twentieth-Century Nuclear Holocaust Fiction in the Hands of Nevil Shute and Walter M. Miller

- Nevil Shute On the Beach

- Walter M. Miller A Canticle for Leibowitz

Chapter V 'Imposing fantasies on the changing landscape:' the Visions of John Christopher, J.G. Ballard and George Turner

- John Christopher The World in Winter

- J.G. Ballard The Drought

- George Turner The Sea and Summer

Chapter VI 'I wonder how much longer we have:' Recent Climate Fiction from the Pens of Maggie Gee, Paolo Bacigalupi, Ruth Ozeki and Yoko Tawada

- Maggie Gee The Ice People

- Paolo Bacigalupi The Windup Girl

- Ruth Ozeki's A Tale for the Time Being

- Yoko Tawada The Last Children of Tokyo

CONCLUSION: Reading Climate Anxiety Through the Lens of a Nuclear Holocaust

- The Uses of Doomsday Clock Narratives

- Fallout and Flood

-"We," the Readers of Doomsday Clock Narratives

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Dominika Oramus is a full professor at the Institute of English Studies, University of Warsaw, holder of a PhD in Literature Studies (1999, University of Warsaw) and of a postdoctoral degree in liberal arts (2008, University of Warsaw - Faculty of Modern Languages). Her books include Grave New World: The Decline of The West in the Fiction of J.G. Ballard, Terminal Press, 2015.