When Nature Strikes Back: The Inconvenient Apocalypse in Franz Hohler’s Der Neue Berg

  • Christoph Weber
Part of the Literatures, Cultures, and the Environment book series (LCE)


With grotesque humor, the Swiss author Hans Hohler showcases in his debut novel Der neue Berg (1989) the inability of officials and bureaucrats to come to terms with the fact that on a hill in the midst of Zurich’s sprawling agglomeration, a volcano is about to erupt. Instead of afflicting a remote region, a mysterious force has brought Earth’s fire to an urban center where the planet is abused on a daily basis. Contrary to doomsday scenarios in popular culture that seek to entertain and thrill the audience, the chain of events in the novel reveals a sublime mythic power whose utter incomprehensibility shatters preconceived notions of risk—an alienating effect that awakens the readers’ own awareness of their dependence on the “goodwill” of nature.


Volcanic Eruption Civil Defense Suburban Community Police Chief Seismic Shock 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christoph Weber
    • 1
  1. 1.University of North TexasDentonUSA

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