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Publications (10 of 14) Show all publications
Grimbeek, M. (2019). Margaret Ronda, Remainders: American Poetry at Nature's End [Review]. American Studies in Scandinavia, 51(2), 132-135
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Margaret Ronda, Remainders: American Poetry at Nature's End
2019 (English)In: American Studies in Scandinavia, ISSN 0044-8060, Vol. 51, no 2, p. 132-135Article, book review (Other academic) Published
National Category
Specific Literatures
Research subject
English
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-75864 (URN)
Available from: 2019-12-06 Created: 2019-12-06 Last updated: 2020-02-06Bibliographically approved
Grimbeek, M. (2018). Levande stenar. Aiolos: Tidskrift för litteratur, teori och estetik (62), 51-53
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Levande stenar
2018 (Swedish)In: Aiolos: Tidskrift för litteratur, teori och estetik, ISSN 1400-7770, no 62, p. 51-53Article in journal (Other academic) Published
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Kulturföreningen Faethon, 2018
National Category
General Literature Studies
Research subject
Comparative Literature
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-70866 (URN)
Available from: 2019-04-09 Created: 2019-04-09 Last updated: 2019-04-26Bibliographically approved
Grimbeek, M. (2018). Shower Power? Satire and the Zuma Presidency. In: : . Paper presented at Satire as Perspective on the Contemporary workshop, Karlstad, 17 October 2018.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Shower Power? Satire and the Zuma Presidency
2018 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Already before his election as president of South Africa in 2009, Jacob Zuma was a public figure mired in controversy. Securing power through populism, and amid allegations of rape, corruption and racketeering, Zuma was instrumental in turning the African National Congress against the sitting president Thabo Mbeki, and led the party to another election victory in 2014 before resigning in February 2018.

 

In this presentation, I give a few examples of the use of satire against the Zuma presidency, focusing on the way in which the showerhead became a metonymy for corruption. The cartoonist Zapiro first started drawing the showerhead on top of Zuma’s head after Zuma testified at his 2006 rape trial – he was acquitted – that he took a shower after unprotected sex to minimise the risk of contracting HIV. In subsequent years, the showerhead was used as the cartoonist’s political barometer, growing and shrinking depending on the issues of the day (and at times disappearing completely), while reminding the public how misguided the president was about HIV infection. The showerhead has become part of South Africa’s popular culture; it has been used both by Zuma’s political opponents to taunt the president, as well as by public protesters.

 

While the true costs of the Zuma presidency to South Africa are yet to be established, Zuma has provided satirists and political opponents with a seemingly inexhaustible wealth of material. In this context, satire is highly political, and it has served to highlight issues of free speech and censorship. At the same time, however, the role played by satire in bringing about political change is difficult to determine.

National Category
Cultural Studies
Research subject
English
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-70867 (URN)
Conference
Satire as Perspective on the Contemporary workshop, Karlstad, 17 October 2018
Available from: 2019-02-01 Created: 2019-02-01 Last updated: 2019-03-07Bibliographically approved
Grimbeek, M. (2018). The Struggle as Pop: Authenticity and Nostalgia in Post-Apartheid Music. In: : . Paper presented at Popular Music Discourses: Authenticity and Mediatization symposium, Karlstad, 13–14 November 2018.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Struggle as Pop: Authenticity and Nostalgia in Post-Apartheid Music
2018 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Other academic)
National Category
Cultural Studies
Research subject
English
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-70868 (URN)
Conference
Popular Music Discourses: Authenticity and Mediatization symposium, Karlstad, 13–14 November 2018
Available from: 2019-02-01 Created: 2019-02-01 Last updated: 2019-03-07Bibliographically approved
Grimbeek, M. (2017). Förföriska tentakulära ekologier. Aiolos: Tidskrift för litteratur, teori och estetik, 56, 101-104
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Förföriska tentakulära ekologier
2017 (Swedish)In: Aiolos: Tidskrift för litteratur, teori och estetik, ISSN 1400-7770, Vol. 56, p. 101-104Article in journal (Other academic) Published
National Category
General Literature Studies Philosophy
Research subject
Comparative Literature
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-48161 (URN)
Available from: 2017-05-16 Created: 2017-05-16 Last updated: 2019-09-26Bibliographically approved
Grimbeek, M. (2017). Imagining the Land [Review]. Canadian Literature (233), 148-149
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Imagining the Land
2017 (English)In: Canadian Literature, ISSN 0008-4360, no 233, p. 148-149Article, book review (Other academic) Published
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2017
National Category
General Literature Studies
Research subject
English; Comparative Literature
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-48580 (URN)
Note

Book review of Towards a Prairie Atonement (by Trevor Herriot) and Imagining the Supernatural North (Edited by Eleanor Rosamund Barraclough, Danielle Marie Cudmore, and Stefan Donecker).

Available from: 2018-04-16 Created: 2018-04-16 Last updated: 2018-04-17Bibliographically approved
Grimbeek, M. (2017). Margaret Atwood's Environmentalism: Apocalypse and Satire in the MaddAddam Trilogy. (Doctoral dissertation). Karlstad: Karlstads universitet
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Margaret Atwood's Environmentalism: Apocalypse and Satire in the MaddAddam Trilogy
2017 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This study considers the way in which Margaret Atwood’s post-apocalyptic MaddAddam Trilogy functions as an environmental project. The main focus is on how the three novels, Oryx and Crake (2003), The Year of the Flood (2009), and MaddAddam (2013), simultaneously draw on and destabilise the apocalypticism inherent in so much environmental discourse, primarily through the use of satire. The trilogy is securely anchored in the concerns of contemporary readers, and transposition of the action to the near future is integral to Atwood’s environmental project: attention is focussed on the present causes of anticipated environmental catastrophe, which readers implicitly are implored to avoid. Atwood’s environmentalism is performed in the interplay between her literary stature, the equivocal content of her work, and the irreverence with which she metaleptically blurs distinctions between fact and fiction, art and commodity, and activism and aesthetics. Whereas the satiric mode serves as a way of avoiding some of the limitations of apocalyptic thinking by maintaining and even creating complexity, it also renders the entire project ambiguous. Uncertainty about the exact environmental injunction presented in the trilogy creates doubts about the degree to which Atwood’s extradiegetic environmental activism should be taken seriously, or conversely. Storytelling is foregrounded in all three novels, and through its concurrent critique of and reliance on market forces and the political potential of art, the MaddAddam Trilogy demonstrates that there is no external position from which the imagination can perform environmentalist miracles. As such, Atwood’s environmental project furthers a profoundly ecological understanding of the world.

Abstract [en]

Margaret Atwood routinely eludes her readers, and the MaddAddam Trilogy is no exception. These three novels, Oryx and Crake (2003), The Year of the Flood (2009), and MaddAddam (2013), are ostensibly written in the tradition of environmental apocalypse, yet they constantly undermine its conventions through satire. This study considers the trilogy as an environmental project, performed in the interplay between Atwood’s literary stature, the ambiguous content of her work, and the irreverence with which she blurs distinctions between fact and fiction, art and commodity, and activism and aesthetics. Atwood’s use of the MaddAddam Trilogy in her real-world environmental activism creates uncertainty about how seriously both her art and her activism should be taken. Her opinions on environmental matters are legitimised, but at the same time an urgent environmental ‘message’ is presented as entertainment. Atwood’s message often appears circular: her art carries no message, but Margaret Atwood the writer does have an important message, which she gets to deliver precisely because of her art. Storytelling is a central theme in all three novels, and through both critiquing and relying on commercialism, the MaddAddam Trilogy demonstrates that there is no external position from which the imagination can perform environmentalist miracles. As such, Atwood’s environmental project furthers a profoundly ecological understanding of the world.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Karlstad: Karlstads universitet, 2017. p. 286
Series
Karlstad University Studies, ISSN 1403-8099 ; 15
Keywords
Margaret Atwood; MaddAddam Trilogy; environmentalism; apocalypse; satire; celebrity activism; metalepsis; commodity aesthetics; storytelling
National Category
General Literature Studies
Research subject
English
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-48126 (URN)978-91-7063-771-1 (ISBN)978-91-7063-772-8 (ISBN)
Public defence
2017-06-16, Sjöströmsalen, 1B309, Karlstads universitet, Karlstad, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2017-05-22 Created: 2017-04-20 Last updated: 2019-09-26Bibliographically approved
Grimbeek, M. (2017). Scientists’ Fictions and The Collapse of Western Civilization. In: : . Paper presented at Erotema: A Conference on Rhetoric and Literature, 14-16 September 2017, Karlstad University.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Scientists’ Fictions and The Collapse of Western Civilization
2017 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

In 2014, respected historians of science Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway published an essay entitled The Collapse of Western Civilization: A View from the Future. This message-driven text uses an overtly science-fictional mode to look back at the present from the vantage point of the late twenty-fourth century. Reflecting on our present, the narrator bleakly notes that “knowledge” about fossil fuel use and climate change “did not translate into power” (2). The authors lay much of the blame for their envisaged collapse of western civilisation at the door of neoliberalism, but also present a sharp attack on present scientific practices that, while certainly founded in some regards, makes for rather uneasy reading in a post-truth age.

 

Oreskes and Conway are by no means the first scholars to turn to genre fiction, yet their contribution is particularly interesting because of their prominent positions as historians of science. In their co-authored nonfiction volume Merchants of Doubt (2010), they explored the manner in which politically-connected scientists with certain financial interests have for decades skewed the public’s understanding—and sometimes delayed US policymaking—on a variety of issues, including smoking, the causes of acid rain and the hole in the ozone layer, DDT use and climate change. In The Collapse of Western Civilization they again present themselves simultaneously as critics of science and scientists in their own right, while also using—and sometimes abusing—the conventions of science fiction to present their environmental message.

 

The Collapse of Western Civilization illustrates some of the difficulties inherent in translating scholarly work into fiction, especially if the result is presented as prophetic science fiction. In this paper, I focus on the way Oreskes and Conway navigate these tensions through framing their fictional narrative with an introduction, a “Lexicon of Archaic Terms”, notes, and an interview with the authors.

Keywords
science fiction; environmentalism; apocalypticism;
National Category
General Literature Studies
Research subject
Comparative Literature
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-63793 (URN)
Conference
Erotema: A Conference on Rhetoric and Literature, 14-16 September 2017, Karlstad University
Available from: 2017-09-18 Created: 2017-09-18 Last updated: 2019-09-26Bibliographically approved
Grimbeek, M. (2016). Wholesale Apocalypse: Brand Names in Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake. Names, 64(2), 88-98, Article ID 1159448.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Wholesale Apocalypse: Brand Names in Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake
2016 (English)In: Names, ISSN 0027-7738, E-ISSN 1756-2279, Vol. 64, no 2, p. 88-98, article id 1159448Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Coinages pervade Margaret Atwood’s post-apocalyptic novel Oryx and Crake (2003). Most of the neologisms in the novel denote corporations and their products and form part of a thoroughgoing critique of consumerism. The coinages are jarringly hyperbolic and their orthography often evokes contrary connotations. However, in the thematic context of the novel, coining practices follow certain patterns and function as effective, if ambiguous, satirical tools. On one level, the practice of branding is thoroughly satirized. On another, however, the neologisms point to both the limitations and possibilities of satire when dealing with the themes addressed in the novel: commoditization, environmental damage on a planetary scale, and a vision of the imminent end of humanity itself.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2016
Keywords
Margaret Atwood; satire; brand names; literature; consumerism
National Category
General Literature Studies General Language Studies and Linguistics
Research subject
English
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-40725 (URN)10.1080/00277738.2016.1159448 (DOI)000376794000005 ()
Available from: 2016-05-17 Created: 2016-02-26 Last updated: 2018-01-10Bibliographically approved
Grimbeek, M. (2015). Book Review of Greening the Maple: Canadian Ecocriticism in Context [Review]. Ecozona, 6(2), 189-192
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Book Review of Greening the Maple: Canadian Ecocriticism in Context
2015 (English)In: Ecozona, ISSN 2171-9594, E-ISSN 2171-9594, Vol. 6, no 2, p. 189-192Article, book review (Refereed) Published
National Category
General Literature Studies
Research subject
Comparative Literature
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-38225 (URN)
Note

Book review of:

Ella Soper and Nicholas Bradley (eds.), Greening the Maple: Canadian Ecocriticism in Context (Calgary: University of Calgary Press, 2013), liv+569 pp.

Available from: 2015-10-28 Created: 2015-10-21 Last updated: 2018-04-17Bibliographically approved
Organisations
Identifiers
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0002-0126-5655

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