Beyond the Event Horizon: Witnessing the Nuclear Sublime in Martin Amis’s London Fields

  • Ashlee Joyce


This chapter explores how Martin Amis’s London Fields conveys the late twentieth-century subject’s hyper-mediated relationship to the prospect of total nuclear war and the challenges to narration posed by the attempt to imagine oneself out of existence. The novel’s many Gothic tropes highlight Samson’s keen awareness of how the narrative is rushing him towards his own annihilation, destabilizing received notions of the novel’s ability to bear witness to the violence it seeks to describe. Ultimately, though, London Fields’ Gothic provides a vehicle for testimony in the face of inexpressibility, troubling the critical cliché of the Gothic as a means of rehearsing supposedly unknowable or inexpressible cultural anxieties through well-worn tropes, by deploying these tropes metafictionally, to focus our attention on the problem of expressibility itself.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ashlee Joyce
    • 1
  1. 1.University of New BrunswickFrederictonCanada

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