ABSTRACT

Visions of postapocalyptic survival abound in contemporary culture. In the Finnish cultural and literary landscape, where such ideas have historically been extremely marginal, narratives of societal collapse have started appearing during the last ten years. This article examines Laura Gustafsson's novel Korpisoturi (Wilderness Warrior, 2016) as a critical assessment of survivalist ideology in contemporary popular culture. By focusing on questions of gender portrayal and environmental ideology, the article suggests that the novel can be approached as a comical deconstruction of a survivalist mind-set and its representation in postapocalyptic fiction. Through its humorous portrayal of a “prepper” protagonist, Wilderness Warrior renegotiates some of the inherent ideological characteristics of apocalyptic utopianism. With its critique of the paradigmatic cultural notions of global ecological catastrophes, the novel also offers a humorous account of the ultimate unnarratability of disaster in the age of the Anthropocene.

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