Abstract

Abstract:

In this essay, I consider postmodernist tendencies in two recent climate change novels, Alexis Wright’s The Swan Book (2013) and Chang-rae Lee’s On Such a Full Sea (2014). While I hesitate to claim that these herald a distinct postmodern turn in climate change fiction, I argue that these novels’ postmodernist self-awareness constitutes a promising new direction for fiction in the Anthropocene. Displaying a postcolonial awareness and deploying the postmodernist strategies of metafiction and magical realism, the novels undermine the omniscience of third-person narrators and the reliability of focalizers in order simultaneously to destabilize realist, imperialist, and anthropocentric constructions of the world. Indeed, they not only question the dominance of master-narratives; they question domination per se. That is, in these novels, voice itself comes under suspicion as an anthropocentric fallacy.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1934-1512
Print ISSN
0039-3827
Pages
pp. 26-42
Launched on MUSE
2018-03-07
Open Access
No
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