The Dystopia of all Dystopias

Malcolm points out some excellent books!

Malcolm's Corner


The abrupt change in J.D. Ballard’s life, from a youthful pampered existence to a struggle for survival in a Japanese internment camp, has been immortalized in Steven Spielberg’s film Empire of the Sun. Later, Ballard went on to become a well-known English writer of dystopian novels, such as The Drowned World, The Burning World and The Crystal World, where barbarism lurks just beneath the surface of civilized life.

Many of us today share similar dystopian sentiments, agreeing with the English philosopher John Gray that we live in a culture “transfixed by the spectacle of its own fragility”. This has become even more true since the 2007/8 financial crisis, as we have become only too aware of the inherent fragility of debt-laden economies. Debt never goes away so debt-fueled economies cannot even tolerate a slowdown without risking an implosion. Nassim Nicholas Taleb recently wrote an entire book…

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