'Fragmented and bewildering:' The new risk society in Jenny Offill's Weather
Keywords:Fourth Industrial Revolution, fragmentation, Jenny Offill, posthumanism, resilience, risk society, transhumanism
US author Jenny Offill’s Weather (2020) shows her idiosyncratic take on the notion of risk society. In the novel and its accompanying website, Offill develops a type of anxious fragmentation as an answer to the challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. A multiple text characterized by compulsive quotation and the formal influence of digital media, Weather is held together by a first-person confessional voice. Eventually, Offill manages to achieve a sense of interconnection through an aesthetics of the fragment thanks to a double movement: she favors a critical posthumanist perspective that understands the interrelational subject as constituted by interaction with multiple others, and she explicitly calls for collective action. Therefore, I conclude that Weather represents Offill’s both aesthetic and political quest, as she distinctly aspires to elicit an answer from readers in the form of social activism.
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