Intersubjectivities in The Flood

LONCON3_logoAdam Welstead

intersubjectivities Maggie Gee’s The Flood

early 20C dystopian
literary legacy of utopian and dangerous European experience from utopia
1910 Wells

critiques of utopian stories
James “effect of anonymity …fundamental”

dystopian imagination
JG Bard—engulf self in crowds
Sarah Hall—brutally administered Britain, Sister revolutionary
Sam Taylor—cages of modern world, expat youths, contemporary Lord of the Flies
Thompson 2005—pop split by quarters, homogenization of space homogenizes people

Maggie Gee’s The Flood 2004
radically different notions of being together
“portrays prevailing conditions through near-future dystopia”
waterlogged Britain, unequal living conditions, frivolity of the rich, hopes for change lost
after the flood, people live utopian lives in the gardens

Sarah Dillon in critique “foregrounds ways in which … rejuvenating science fiction”

Living in the End Times, “global capitalist… approaching an apocalyptic zero-point.”
use the stages of grief to examine apocalyptic narratives

social divisions, equalities,
stage of denial in pending apocalypse
characters are living in the End Times, characters don’t recognize/accept the experience is happening at the time

“collective fetishistic disavowal”
just something new

easier for us to imagine world’s destruction than end of capitalism

News of ‘flood sickness’

ceremony marks 25-year anniversary of pleasure zone
destruction of pleasure zones
ominous foreshadowing, but politicians at a gala
lingering sense of hope resounds through the Flood
city “gorged on dreams”
spectators are linked only by disconnection

The Flood’s dystopian Britain
“dress up and see and be seen”

disaffection of those who do not appear
margins remain and yet are absent
only those who define the city are those who are heard
“Who is this ‘our people’ that they’re going on about?”
social discontent
closed spaces of society, social and religious activists
bored people are actually looking for

following the flood, post-apocalyptic space
“Unusually thoughtful”
garden as heterotopia, Michel Foucault
effectively enacted

Kew Gardens are sites of utopia. Something new, something other.
“Something outside the city, a blueness, a greenness”


modest reinvention of utopia/dystopia

two worlds of the future—change and continuance… continuance is dystopia, change is utopia

Gee’s illustrations of marginalized people
social objection and its disastrous ramifications
alternative modes of existence

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge