Please note that places for this reading group are very limited. If you book a place and can’t make it, we would be grateful if you could let us know as soon as you can so that we can offer your place to someone else.
The Edinburgh reading group is back! Whether you are a casual reader or a voracious consumer of literature, you are more than welcome to join us. For our first season back, we will focus on the emergent genre of climate fiction. Use this page to book for our fourth meeting, where we’ll be reading Yoko Tawada’s The Last Children of Tokyo.
‘The climate crisis’, writes Amitav Ghosh, ‘is also a crisis of culture, and thus of the imagination’. That is to say, how do we talk about the climate crisis when its scope is so unfathomable?
Climate fiction might provide a solution. By exploring the environmental, social, and psychological consequences of ecological emergency in the familiar format of the novel, climate fiction can help us to make some sense of the incomprehensible.
For the first two months, we will look at novels depicting how climate breakdown is manifesting itself in the present, and the impact it is having on conditions in both high- and low-income countries. We will then move on to speculative novels, which ask us to imagine how society might look after surviving ecological collapse. We will end on the theme of hope, and the idea that climate fiction can mobilise our desire for change.
4th April – Oil on Water by Helon Habila (2010)
2nd May – Weather by Jenny Offill (2020)
6th June – The Drowned World by J.G. Ballard (1962)
4th July – The Last Children of Tokyo by Yoko Tawada, trans. Margaret Mitsutani (2018)
1st August – Parable of the Sower by Octavia E. Butler (1993)
The reading group will meet on the first Monday of every month. A place at the reading group is £5, and this can be redeemed on the night against the purchase of any book in the bookshop. Join us for wine, nibbles and great conversation!