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    Microtopias: the post-apocalyptic communities of Jim Crace’s The Pesthouse

    Edwards, Caroline (2009) Microtopias: the post-apocalyptic communities of Jim Crace’s The Pesthouse. Textual Practice 23 (5), pp. 763-786. ISSN 0950-236X.

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    Happiness was in the east. Wasn’t that what everyone believed? Jim Crace, The Pesthouse After the fall of the Berlin Wall and the subsequent collapse of communism in the former Soviet bloc, the concept of utopia was blighted with the stigma of Stalinist totalitarianism. Khrushchev’s denunciation of Stalin’s despotism at the 20th Congress of the Communist Party in 1956 revealed the Stalinist-communist utopia to be a brutal experiment in institutionality and caused many thinkers and writers on the Left to withdraw their support, as manifested by a sharp rise in dystopian and anti-utopian fiction and commentary. The ensuing identification of utopia as synonymous with State totalitarianism – the dangerous ‘grand narrative’ of a programmatic and enforced approach to social organisation – was further bolstered with the rise of multiculturalism and identity politics, and their accompanying discourses of pluralism, fragmentation and social heterogeneity.


    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis, available online:
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Creative Arts, Culture and Communication
    Research Centres and Institutes: Contemporary Literature, Centre for
    Depositing User: Sarah Hall
    Date Deposited: 04 Mar 2014 17:23
    Last Modified: 09 Aug 2023 12:34


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