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The Brave New Worlds of Green Science Fiction: Ecocritical Discourse in The Three-Body Problem and The Long Earth Series

Crozier, V (2023) The Brave New Worlds of Green Science Fiction: Ecocritical Discourse in The Three-Body Problem and The Long Earth Series. Doctoral thesis, Liverpool John Moores University.

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This thesis examines two twenty-first century eco-science fiction series, The Three Body Problem series (2006-2010), by the Chinese science fiction author Liu Cixin, and The Long Earth series (2012-2016), co-authored by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter. It first traces the metamorphosis of science fiction from a genre primarily concerned with human adventure and heroism, to a more eco-conscious narrative mode in which humankind is instead delineated as a destructive force set on a path of environmental despoilation, and how this ‘New Wave’ of science fiction occurred at the same moment as the launch of the modern environmental movement in the 1960s. Each of the chapters addresses the ways in which both of these series treat a number of environmental concerns, such as the problematic manner in which we speak about the more-than-human world; the rapid deforestation of our planet; the shared violence experienced by women and our animal kin; the delineation of the forest in literature and popular culture as either malevolent, benevolent, or imperilled; the potential environmental fallout from nanoscientific developments; what could happen to our planet if we were to communicate with extraterrestrial life; and the use of video-ludic recreation as a vehicle with which to communicate eco-anxieties and to simulate worst-case scenario environmental futures. The thesis argues that eco-science fiction is a crucial cultural contribution to ecocritical discourse, and one that has a considerable influence on the environmental consciousness of its readership. In its examination of a broad spectrum of issues that we face, not just in the immediate present but in the near or distant future, this thesis underlines that eco-science fiction is an essential cultural instrument with which to understand and respond to our planet in an epoch of environmental crises.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Ecocriticism; Science Fiction; Environmental Crises; Cixin Liu; Terry Pratchett; Stephen Baxter; The Three-Body Problem; The Long Earth; Critical Plant Studies; Critical Animal Studies; Ecofeminism; Video Game Studies; Nanotechnology; Forests in Popular Culture; Extraterrestrials
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
Divisions: Humanities & Social Science
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 18 Apr 2023 15:02
Last Modified: 18 Apr 2023 15:03
DOI or ID number: 10.24377/LJMU.t.00019171
Supervisors: Moran, J, Tolan, F and Perfect, M
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/19171
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