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Un monde à habiter : imaginaire de la crise environnementale dans les fictions de l'Anthropocène

Abstract : Some geologists argue that the Holocene, our current geological epoch, has now been replaced by the Anthropocene, a new geological time characterized by the irreversible impact of human activity on Earth. This scientific hypothesis is substantiated in large part by the environmental crisis striking the contemporary world. The many ways our environment is declining force us to question the current chances for the planet, and thus humanity, to survive. In the last decades, many works within northern occidental culture have been reflecting this troubling reality through fictitious scenarios. This network of numerous and diverse representations participate in building a social “imaginary” (the French concept of “imaginaire”) of the environmental crisis.This study focuses on such representation in literature by comparing eight novels from France, Canada and the United States, deeming them as « fictions of the Anthropocene ». It investigates what, in fact, contemporary fictions contribute to the social imaginary of the environmental crisis. The works this study concentrates on use common themes such as pollution or global warming, but also elaborate fictitious scenarios which imagine possible futures for an endangered world. Such works depict how the environmental crisis is related to the way we, as humans, dwell in the world. Within this context, it becomes convincingly apparent that the current environmental crisis is profoundly affecting humans individually and collectively. The elaborate writing and the corresponding imaginary of these works confirm the relevance of literary narratives when considering the question of human survival in the Anthropocene.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, October 5, 2016 - 10:28:09 AM
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Anaïs Boulard. Un monde à habiter : imaginaire de la crise environnementale dans les fictions de l'Anthropocène. Littératures. Université d'Angers, 2016. Français. ⟨NNT : 2016ANGE0005⟩. ⟨tel-01376541⟩

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