The culture of twenty-first century America largely revolves around narcissistic death, violence, and visions of doom. As people are bombarded with amoral metanarratives that display an almost complete lack of empathy for others on television, in films, and on the internet, their insatiable appetite for excessive pain and routine death reflects an embrace of an endlessly warring culture. Foster explores this culture of the apocalypse, from hoarding and gluttony to visions of the post-apocalyptic world.
Gwendolyn Audrey Foster
Filmmaker / Artist / Author
"In this provocative, passionate, and uncompromising brief book, Professor of English Gwendolyn Audrey Foster does not mince words: humanity is definitely doomed, and it's a good thing. The currently unfolding ecological catastrophe is bound to eventually wipe us offthe face of the planet, and Foster, a self-described radical environmentalist, hopes that, once depeopled, the earth will beable to eventually heal itself. But before all this comes to pass,it is (presumably) still worthwhile to analyze the cultural foiblesof a human civilization on the eve of destruction, and so Foster sets out in this book to examine what she calls the 'apocotainment' pervasive in the American(ized) culture that is morbidly, tellingly fascinated with death, suffering, and its own impending demise." -- Cultural Politics
"Gwendolyn Audrey Foster writes passionately about the debased media-scape of our death-worshipping culture. She probes into our collective fascination with an Earth without us, even as we continue activities that are sure to lead to yet more ecological devastation and mass extinction. Hoarders, Doomsday Preppers, and the Culture of Apocalypse is not a comforting book, but it is an eloquent call from a voice crying in the wilderness: a warning that we ignore at our peril." – Steven Shaviro, DeRoy Professor, English, Wayne State University
"In this urgent and important book, Gwendolyn Audrey Foster exposes and explores the multiform obscenities - of violence, wealth, consumption, ownership, avarice, aggression, and more - that infect the politics, businesses, entertainments, and mentalities of today's narcissistic, fear-peddling, death-celebrating culture, shining a laser-sharp spotlight on excesses of sexism, neo-liberalism, speciesism, capitalism, and nationalism in the contemporary media." - David Sterritt, Columbia University
"In her newest book, Hoarders, Doomsday Preppers, and the Culture of Apocalypse, Gwendolyn Audrey Foster explores the excesses of late-capitalist American consumerism; her exploration of media representation of gluttony, hoarding, waste, and debt is compelling reading for anyone interested in contemporary popular culture." - Patrice Petro, Professor, English, Film Studies, and Global Studies, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
"Gwendolyn Audrey Foster challenges us to confront the apocalyptic narratives of our time in her engaging and thought-provoking book. Through our desire for what she terms 'apocotainment' - the apocalypse as entertainment for the masses - we eagerly digest the mediatized horrors of our planet's ecological destruction on screen as we continue to deny it as reality in our own front yards. Foster's book is a wakeup call to take notice of the preciousness of our common humanity, before we confront the death of our planet in real life." - Valérie K. Orlando, Professor, French and Francophone Literature and Film, University of Maryland