This is the first of three reading groups to discuss the Southern Reach Trilogy by award-winning author Jeff VanderMeer, who will be visiting Notre Dame on April 25-26. This first meeting will discuss Book One of the trilogy, Annihilation.
Jeff VanderMeer is one of the leading authors in the "New Weird" movement. His fiction, anthologies, and writing pedagogy have won numerous awards, and The Southern Reach Trilogy is being transformed into a series of films, beginning with Annihilation, directed by Alex Garland, due out next month.
Jeff's interest in ecosystems, environmentalism, and the human relationship to the natural world is manifest in much of his work, including Finch, a detective novel about sentient fungi, and his most recent novel Borne, a post-apocalyptic romp through a biotech wasteland ruled by a gargantuan flying bear. The Southern Reach Trilogy, a science-fiction allegory for climate change in which a section of the Gulf Coast in transformed into an autonomous, alien being, provoked The New Yorker to call VanderMeer "the weird Thoreau."
He's also written about the problem of storytelling in the Anthropocene, and talked with Timothy Morton about ontology, fiction, and cats in the Los Angeles Review of Books.
To join the reading group, please sign up here.