The aspects of Pacific Edge that still stick with me are Tom’s journals, or the italicized memories at the beginning of most chapters. I like their musing nature, the nonlinear disconnections, the passionate tone for change. They are opportunities for KSR to emerge alongside Tom as the grand narrator, to reveal his philosophical side when it comes to ruminating on the construction of this “pocket utopia”.
As Dr. Gould knows, I myself am creating a speculative fiction novel, and I’ll be writing my master’s thesis about that process. Therefore, this idea of a pocket utopia really sticks with me.
I feel like one of the biggest realizations I’ve had so far from this class (and, in turn, from discussing Pacific Edge) is how no generation before mine has been seriously tasked with what I’d consider to be the greatest challenge of the 21st century: how to mitigate the effects of climate change. Perhaps what’s most frustrating is that it feels like the climate is already changing (this is obvious) but I still feel like people older than myself have the reins. Therefore, I’ve been asking myself how we adapt culturally to the present problems of our age.
In the throes of thinking about this during the week, I wrote a little something I’m going to copy below, and what I might call “a response to Tom’s ideas about utopia”.
Today I’m thinking about real-world responses, and rapid-response art. How never before have we needed such a collective human task of working together and salvaging the earth. We should be more expedient. The urge should be tyrannical, it should be our obsession each day. It should make us want to engage. It should be what ignites and excites people. But instead it infuriates and terrifies them, because those who want to change it don’t have any true power.
I need this to be my message, because it’s my only power play.
My writing may be about a whole bunch of things – not just about the 45th and his debacle of an administration (so, my lack of political allegiances should be clear).
I think the U.S. is in disarray.
And maybe that’s what this is all about.
How much that hurts.