Exploring Intersections of Unreadability and Climate Change

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


A presentation by Edit, the principal investigator, on thoughts for an exploration of the intersection of climate change in narrative fiction and unreadability. It will build on original thought based on examination and adaptation of work by Jessica Lang (2017) regarding trauma and unreadability as a literary topic, brief introductions of literature review on “Memory and Narrative of Traumatic Events: A Literature Review” (Crespo & Fernández-Lansac, 2016) and climate change as trauma (Woodbury, 2019), tempered by Schürmann’s (2023) caveat regarding the Western tradition of a priori definitions of trauma. It will also offer an alternate pathway not predicated on definitions of trauma which seems to allow for a priori considerations of climate change as a point of intersection with unreadability as a literary topic.

The presentation will allow time for a personal reflection activity during which individuals will engage with selections of fictional climate change narratives. Edit will then walk through some of the significant points of the exploration. The attendees will then be asked to engage again in personal reflection on selections. Lastly, Edit will offer two questions to incite further discussion related to the topic.

Works Cited

Crespo, Maria & Fernández-Lansac, Violeta. “Memory and Narrative of Traumatic Events: A Literature Review.” _Psychological Trauma : Theory, Research, Practice and Policy_, 8,
2016, pp. 149-156. https://doi.org/10.1037/tra0000041.

Lang, Jessica. _Textual Silence: Unreadability and the Holocaust_. Rutgers University Press, 2017.

Schürmann, F.B. “Exposition of a Half-Formed System: Trauma and Other Matters in Eimear McBride’s a Girl Is a Half-formed Thing.” _Trauma, Memory and Silence of the Irish Woman in Contemporary Literature_. Routledge, 2023.

Woodbury, Zhiwa. “Climate Trauma: Toward a New Taxonomy of Trauma.” _Ecopsychology_, 11(1), 2019. https://doi.org/10.1089/eco.2018.0021
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 26 May 2023
EventREWILD - University of Brighton, Brighton, United Kingdom
Duration: 26 May 202326 May 2023


Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


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