Brent Bellamy is a doctoral student in the Faculty of Arts, department of English & Film Studies.

Residues of Now: A Critique of US Post-Apocalyptic Fiction

Brent Bellamy's research engages the role narrative plays in contemporary U.S. post-apocalyptic fiction. He explains that this genre focuses much of its energy elaborating the consequences of the continuation of human activity on the planet - from petroculture and financialization to the systems of governance and belonging that regular our lives - struggling to imagine how humanity might survive ecological or nuclear catastrophe in order to continue life unabated. Following the development of the genre alongside ecological concerns and crises, Bellamy's work emphasizes the role played by narrative in imagining, not only a better future for all along utopian lines, but also, a future for the forces of growth and progress driving oil extraction and technological advancements. Does the current economic system need narrative to maintain the growth necessary to its reproduction? What is at stake in narratives that struggle to imagine the continuance of life along the lines of the present?

keywords: post-apocalyptic fiction, science fiction, American fiction, ecological writing and criticism, cultural studies, social theory