Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Contaminations"Beyond Dialectics in Modern Literature, Science and Film"$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Michael Mack

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781474411363

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474411363.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 07 July 2022

Introduction: Climate Change and the Contamination of the Anthropocene

Introduction: Climate Change and the Contamination of the Anthropocene

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction: Climate Change and the Contamination of the Anthropocene
Source:
Contaminations
Author(s):

Michael Mack

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9781474411363.003.0001

Introduces the figure of Contamination as an alternative to dialectics. Challenging various concepts of purity, Contaminations enables us to recognise the simultaneity of catastrophe and hope, of anxiety and grace. It develops the figure of contamination through a close reading of Jonathan Franzen’s novel Freedom. Analyses how the satirical irony of Freedom operates at the level of incongruity: Walter Berglund’s moralistic stance fighting the evil of the Anthropocene (humanity’s overpopulation) clashes with the ruthlessness of his actions (colliding with the interests the coal industry). Walter separates society from nature, playing off the latter against the former. Walter thus creates a notion of nature as pure entity which he opposes to the pollutions caused by humanity. The human induced destruction of our planet dialectically ensures the triumph of the positive after ecological collapse. In dialectical manner ‘collapse’ morphs into ‘a window of opportunity’. Walter’ environmental activism actually supports the destruction of the environment: he campaigns for the mining of coal (in order preserve a bird species). In search for the positive we delude ourselves about what is truly harmful. Walter Berglund evaporates his own sense of freedom by dialectically turning the negative into the positive: by spinning ecological collapse into opportunities for preservation.

Keywords:   Immunity, Anthropocene, Entanglement, Dialectics, Jonathan Franzen, Dipesh Chakrabarty, R. Esposito, Karen Barad, Nancy Cartwright, Franzen’s Novel Freedom

Edinburgh Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.