Archive for the ‘bibliography’ Category

The Drowned World (1962)

By • Oct 10th, 2006 •

Category: bibliography, deep time, enviro-disaster, inner space, urban decay

OPENING LINE: “Soon it would be too hot.” From Amazon UK: In the 21st century, fluctuations in solar radiation have caused the ice-caps to melt and the seas to rise. Global temperatures have climbed, and civilization has retreated to the Arctic and Antarctic circles. London is a city now inundated by a primeval swamp, to […]

The Burning World (aka The Drought; 1964)

By • Oct 8th, 2006 •

Category: bibliography, deep time, enviro-disaster, urban decay

OPENING LINE: “At noon, when Dr Charles Ransom moored his houseboat in the entrance to the river, he saw Quilter, the idiot son of the old woman who lived in the ramshackle barge outside the yacht basin, standing on a spur of exposed rock on the opposite bank and smiling at the dead birds floating […]

The Crystal World (1966)

By • Oct 8th, 2006 •

Category: bibliography, deep time, inner space

OPENING LINE: “Above all, the darkness of the river was what impressed Dr. Sanders as he looked out for the first time across the open mouth of the Matarre estuary.” Ballard’s fourth novel. My 1993 Flamingo version has quotes on the back: Through a ‘leaking’ of time and a supersaturation of matter, a forest area […]

The Atrocity Exhibition (1970)

By • Oct 8th, 2006 •

Category: bibliography, inner space, media landscape, medical procedure, sexual politics, short stories, speed & violence, William Burroughs

OPENING LINE: “Apocalypse. A disquieting feature of this annual exhibition — to which the patients themselves were not invited — was the marked preoccupation of the paintings with the theme of world cataclysm, as if these long-incarcerated patients had sensed some seismic upheaval within the minds of their doctors and nurses.” For many, The Atrocity […]

Vermilion Sands (1971)

By • Oct 8th, 2006 •

Category: bibliography, consumerism, flying, Salvador Dali, surrealism

OPENING LINE: “All summer the cloud-sculptors would come from Vermilion Sands and sail their painted gliders above the coral towers that rose like white pagodas beside the highway to Lagoon West.” (from ‘The Cloud-Sculptors of Coral D’). I’m not covering every one of JGB’s short-story collections in this bibliography — with the release of the […]

Crash (1973)

By • Sep 17th, 2006 •

Category: bibliography, death of affect, Jean Baudrillard, sexual politics, speed & violence

OPENING LINE: “Vaughan died yesterday in his last car-crash.” If The Drowned World was the book which cemented Ballard’s literary reputation (in Britain, at least), then Crash was almost certainly the one which made him a non-entity in America’s eyes. Following on from publisher Nelson Doubleday’s outrage at an earlier Ballard story, ‘Why I Want […]

Concrete Island (1974)

By • Sep 17th, 2006 •

Category: architecture, bibliography, inner space, speed & violence

OPENING LINE: “Soon after three o’clock on the afternoon of April 22nd 1973, a 35-year-old architect named Robert Maitland was driving down the high-speed exit lane of the Westway interchange in central London”. This short novel represents the second installment in JGB’s ‘urban disaster’ trilogy (Crash was the first; High-Rise was to follow). Architect Robert […]