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American Science Fiction and the Cold War

Literature and Film

David Seed

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£34.00

American Science Fiction - in both literature and film - has played a key role in the portrayal of the fears inherent in the Cold War. The end of this era heralds the need for a reassessment of the literary output of the forty-year period since 1945. Working through a series of important texts, David Seed investigates the political inflexions put on American narratives in the post-war decades by Cold War cultural circumstances. Nuclear holocaust, Russian invasion, and the perceived rise of totalitarianism in American society are key elements in the author'sexploration of science fiction narratives which include Fahrenheit 451, Invasion of the Body Snatchers and Dr Strangelove. Written in a lively and engaging style, the author's approach draws on the significant body of Nuclear Criticism and the historicism of Hayden White and others in order to bring out the ideological tensions and urgencies in this fiction. Relating the theory to a range of popular novels, stories and films makes this book accessible to students, academics and general readers alike.

About the Author

David Seed is Professor of American Literature at the University of Liverpool

Reviews

David Seed's thorough and tightly-argued book about Cold War American cinema and science fiction. Here the referencing is immaculate.
Genuinely exciting … thoroughly revisionist in its range and preoccupations, adventurous in approach, and offering a radical re-reading of a body of work that has either been neglected entirely or marginalised as lacking serious social engagement … David Seed is unparallelled in both his knowledge of and authority within post-war American science fiction.
- Professor Ian Bell

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