The Hummer as giant middle finger

This post was written by Friday blogger Annie Reid.

American speculative fiction author Kim Stanley Robinson is interviewed in the Guardian. His works include Forty Signs of Rain and the new Fifty Degrees Below, the first two works of a trilogy about an America facing global warming and a new ice age, as well as the alternative history The Years of Rice and Salt, in which he imagines world history after an even more virulent bubonic plague, which “killed 99 percent of the population, leaving [Europe] a vast cemetary of buildings and bones. Lost is the Renaissance, the Industrial Revolution, and the discoveries of the Americas, their colonization by the British and French. Buddhism and Islam flourish while Christianity and Judaism have almost no role in the world.”

In the Guardian, he talks frankly about the American response to any possibility of global warming or climatological changes:

“I think the US is in a terrible state of denial,” he says firmly. “Worse than that, we seem to be caught in a kind of Gotterdammerung response: we’d rather have the world go down in flames than change our lifestyle or admit we’re wrong. Even here in California, 50% of cars on the freeway are SUVs, and they’re political statements: they say, we’re going to take the rest of the world down with us because we don’t give a damn. Essentially they’re Republican vehicles: when you see an SUV go by, you know the driver voted for Bush. I do think the world has larger global warming problems, but if the US were actually engaged in dealing with them, there’d be a sense that the worst abuser had seen the light and the whole world was on the same page.”

Here’s another interview with Robinson, in which he answers questions that have plagued writers for all the ages, like “Why are your books so long?”


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