Freeside Europe Online Academic Journal

Freeside Europe Online Academic Journal

Modern cultural, literary and linguistic perspectives

Zsolt Czigányik: Utopianism and Climate Change: A Book Review of Thaler, Mathias, No Other Planet: Utopian Visions for a Climate-Changed World (2022)

Book review

DOI 10.51313/Freeside-2023-08

In his recent book, Mathias Thaler, professor of political theory at the University of Edinburgh, argues for the use of speculative literature, particularly dystopias, in political decision making. Through the analysis of the works of Jemisin, Robinson and Atwood, he contends that the climate crisis is coupled with a crisis of the imagination, and the analytical potential in utopia may not only help us to understand the situation, but also to devise ways to avert the danger of a climate catastrophe. As the current status quo cannot be maintained, dystopias, through an appropriate dosage of the feeling of danger, can help us avoid both an escapist way of wishful thinking and a catastrophist laissez-faire mindset. No Other Planet is an important book, through its interdisciplinary analyses it offers a thorough scrutiny of the seriousness of the global situation, while it also fuels moderate optimism – a full demise can be averted, but only with serious efforts.

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ISSN 1786-7967

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