Monday, April 22, 2013

Has Climate Change Given Birth to a New Genre?


Cli-Fi. Climate change fiction.

From a piece on NPR...

The book was Odds Against Tomorrow by Nathaniel Rich. Its protagonist is a boy genius who spins out worst-case scenarios and sells his elaborate calculations to corporations. Given what happens next — a disastrous hurricane floods New York City — it's tempting to say that Rich himself predicted Sandy. He didn't, of course. He was as surprised as anyone else.

"I had the very strange experience of editing the final proof of my novel one night, going to sleep, and waking up and essentially seeing it adapted on cable television the next morning," Rich says. "It was eerie. But I think this is the time that we live in now. We live in this time where our worst fears are being realized regularly."

Odds is the latest in what seems to be an emerging literary genre. Over the past decade, more and more writers have begun to set their novels and short stories in worlds, not unlike our own, where the Earth's systems are noticeably off-kilter. The genre has come to be called climate fiction — "cli-fi," for short.

1 comment:

dan said...

While ''CLI FI'' makes a dictionary item at WORDSPY

http://www.wordspy.com/words/cli-fi.asp

following back to back news trend stories on NPR and the CSM, I am going one step further with this word I coined a few years ago during my work as a climate activist, to create THREE new categories of CLI FI

1. CLI FI LITE
2. CLI FI DARK
3. CLI FI DEEP

and CLI FI can take place in the past, the present or the future. It is sci fi with a climate angle. SO -- any suggestions from your own reading of earlier books or current books of which sci fi or cli fi novels or movies might fit one of these three categories and why? I would say the cli fi novel I produced and packaged last year POLAR CITY RED and written by Jim Laughter as a real page turner of a cli fi novel and all the words are his and all the money goes to him -- altho so far we sold only 271 copies in a year, so it goes...i would say POLAR CITY RED falls in the category of CLI FI LITE.

A book like THE ROAD by Cormac McCarthy might fall in the CLI FI DEEP category. CLI FI DARK? any suggestions?


Earliest Citation:

From "Soylent Green" in 1973 to "The Day After Tomorrow" in 2004,
movies also began to venture into a new genre of science fiction that
might be called "cli-fi" .. or climate fiction.

Cli-fi is also a new genre for novels and short stories.
—Dan Bloom, "The Next Big Genre: 'Cli-Fi' — Climate Fiction, in Which
'Mad Max' Meets 'The Road'," The Wrap, November 3, 2011


http://www.wordspy.com/words/cli-fi.asp


CLI FI makes dictionary here

cli-fi
n. A literary or movie genre featuring dystopian stories of Earth
affected by extreme climate change. [Climate + fiction.]


Example Citations:
Odds is the latest in what seems to be an emerging literary genre.
Over the past decade, more and more writers have begun to set their
novels and short stories in worlds, not unlike our own, where the
Earth's systems are noticeably off-kilter. The genre has come to be
called climate fiction — "cli-fi," for short.
—Angela Evancie, "So Hot Right Now: Has Climate Change Created A New
Literary Genre?," National Public Radio, April 20, 2013


Cli-fi, or 'climate fiction,' describes a dystopian present, as
opposed to a dystopian future. And don't call it 'science fiction.'
Cli-fi is literary fiction.
—Husna Haq, "Climate change inspires a new literary genre: cli-fi,"
The Christian Science Monitor, April 26, 2013


Earliest Citation:
From "Soylent Green" in 1973 to "The Day After Tomorrow" in 2004,
movies also began to venture into a new genre of science fiction that
might be called "cli-fi" .. or climate fiction.

Cli-fi is also a new genre for novels and short stories.
—Dan Bloom, "The Next Big Genre: 'Cli-Fi' — Climate Fiction, in Which
'Mad Max' Meets 'The Road'," The Wrap, November 3, 2011