Noongar author Claire Coleman’s new novel forces us to question what we value and how we live by combining dystopia and utopia, in a near-future very like our own.
What might our future look like? Together, these speculative fiction stories offer a First Nations response to this burning question.
In his latest novel, Steve Toltz cements his reputation as an exceptional comic writer.
The Witch - Luis Ricardo Falero (1882)
Part historical novel, part speculative fiction, A History of Dreams examines the themes of inequality and authoritarianism from the perspective of a coven of witchy young women.
The work of imagining alternate futures is also about re-casting alternative pasts, as is done in the award-winning novel, ‘Washington Black’ by Esi Edugyan and adapted for the screen by podcast guest Selwyn Seyfu Hinds.
Washington Black/Random House
Stories about alternative worlds can be a powerful way of critiquing the problems of our own world.
Science fiction offers readers a way to rethink social dilemmas.
MATJAZ SLANIC/Via Getty Images
Fantasy fiction provides more than escapism for young readers.
Even in a world where 99% of the male population is dead, patriarchy is still a very comfortable pair of shoes and very easy to slip into.
Afrofuturism, like the kind seen in Marvel’s Black Panther, allows Black people to imagine themselves into the future.
Afrofuturism allows Black people to not only imagine their distant futures but also how to survive the anti-Black present.
© James McKay
We need to create a transport system that is zero carbon – and socially just – in only a few years. We just need to recognise that it’s possible.
Costumes from the dystopian novel The Handmaid’s Tale.
Jim Lo Scalzo
Speculative writers flesh out our passing thoughts into complete, functioning societies and explore how they might unfold.
Biologists are gathering evidence of green algae (pictured here in Kuwait) becoming carbohydrate-rich but less nutritious, due to increased carbon dioxide levels. As science fiction becomes science fact, new forms of storytelling are emerging.
As we enter the age of the Anthropocene, there is a growing recognition of different kinds of ‘un-real’ storytelling.
© Warner Bros.
In this vision of the future, everything that we currently do in the real world – going to school, going to work, socialising, leisure – is done in a vast virtual environment.
The future and the past, money, technology and politics documented and imagined in fact and fiction, in an economist’s recommended reading.
Former Globe and Mail newspaper reporter turned novelist Omar El Akkad contemplates his debut book
American War in his publisher’s Toronto office in this 2017 file photo.
(THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young)
Astronomer Bryan Gaensler picks five speculative and science fiction novels worth reading, including Omar El Akkad’s American War.
Solarpunk imagines a sustainable future, and what it might be like to live in it.
Image from www.shutterstock.com
Punks aren’t known for their positivity, but ‘solarpunks’ are all about optimism. A new movement of speculative fiction, art, fashion, and activism, it imagines a sustainable future that requires radical social change.
Women dressed as handmaids promoting the TV series The Handmaid’s Tale.
Brian Snyder, Reuters
With a new TV series based on the novel - and its bleak vision of women’s rights - The Handmaid’s Tale is riding a new wave of popularity.
Whatever name you give it, writing of this sort is increasingly becoming the prime location for imaginative representations of our culture’s deepest hopes and fears.