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Gerry Canavan
Marquette University (Milwaukee, WI 53233-2225)

Science Fiction and the Philosophical Concept of Totality

Summer research and writing on American Literature, and History and Philosophy of Science.

My research focuses on one of the most globally influential genres of the contemporary United States: science fiction. Science fiction offers an increasingly mainstream vocabulary for negotiating the relationship between individuals and their social fabric, as well as for understanding the place of the human species within the larger cosmos. I consequently argue that science fiction is a tremendously useful archive for interdisciplinary work in the humanities in the 21st century academy, both within the space of the classroom and in scholars' attempts to communicate our knowledge practices with the public more broadly. The 20th and 21st centuries have been a time in which, as J.G. Ballard said, "everything is becoming science fiction"; as a result, far from occupying some literary periphery, science fiction plays a pivotal role in contemporary debates over history, identity, empire, justice, and, in our moment of escalating ecological crisis, the prospects for "the future" as such.

Project fields:
American Literature; History and Philosophy of Science, Technology, and Medicine

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

Total amounts:
$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2015 – 6/30/2015