The Drowned World

The Drowned World

infobox Book |
name = The Drowned World
title_orig =
translator =


image_caption = Cover of first edition (paperback)
author = J. G. Ballard
illustrator =
cover_artist =
country = United Kingdom
language = English
series =
genre = Science fiction novel
publisher = Berkley Books
release_date = 1962
english_release_date =
media_type = Print (Hardcover & Paperback)
pages = 158 pp
isbn = NA
preceded_by =
followed_by =

"The Drowned World" is a 1962 science fiction novel by J. G. Ballard. In contrast to much post-apocalyptic fiction, the novel features a central character who, rather than being disturbed by the end of the old world, is enraptured by the chaotic reality that has come to replace it. The novel is an expansion of a novella with the same title published in Science Fiction Adventures magazine in January 1962, Vol 4 No. 24. (Nova Publications.)

Plot summary

"The Drowned World" opens within the conventions of a hard SF novel, as the catastrophe responsible for the apocalypse is explained scientifically – solar radiation has caused the polar ice-caps to melt and worldwide temperature to soar, leaving the cities of northern Europe and America submerged in beautiful and haunting tropical lagoons. Yet Ballard’s novel is thematically more complex than is immediately apparent. Ballard uses the post-apocalyptic world of the story to mirror the collective unconscious desires of the main characters. A theme throughout Ballard’s writing is the idea that human beings construct their surroundings to reflect their unconscious drives. In "The Drowned World", however, a natural catastrophe causes the real world to transform itself into a dream landscape, causing the central characters to regress mentally.

External links

* [http://www.depauw.edu/sfs/backissues/62/rossi62art.htm Images from the Disaster Area] , an article on "The Drowned World" and other works by Ballard.
* [http://www.rickmcgrath.com/jgb.html The Terminal Collection: JG Ballard First Editions]


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