Dana Phillips
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Collapse, resilience, stability and sustainability in Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam trilogy
in Literature and sustainability

Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam Trilogy relies on tropes of collapse, resilience, stability and sustainability to structure its narrative. While reviewers and critics have read the Trilogy as a work of climate fiction, of post-apocalyptic science fiction and of ‘speculative fiction’ (the latter being Atwood’s preferred label), it also may be interpreted in much broader terms as a satirical series of historical novels. Such an interpretation requires understanding the Trilogy’s complicated narrative temporality along lines suggested by Hayden White’s concepts of the ‘proto-retrospective’ and the ‘pre-posterous’. Such an interpretation also acknowledges the difficulty the Trilogy poses for redemptive readings, especially ecocritical ones.

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Literature and sustainability

Concept, text and culture

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