This book is a full-length study of Douglas Coupland, one of the twenty-first century's most innovative and influential novelists. It explores the prolific first decade-and-a-half of his career, from Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture (1991) to JPod (2006), a period in which he published ten novels and four significant volumes of non-fiction. Emerging in the last decade of the twentieth century—amidst the absurd contradictions of instantaneous global communication and acute poverty—Coupland's novels, short stories, essays, and visual art have intervened in specifically contemporary debates regarding authenticity, artifice, and art. This book explores Coupland's response, in ground-breaking novels such as Microserfs, Girlfriend in a Coma and Miss Wyoming, to some of the most pressing issues of our times.
Conclusion: JPod and Coupland
in the future
I am thinking about the future.
I am optimistic about the future. (Shampoo Planet, 1993)1
‘I don’t believe in the future. I think we’re all doomed’. (JPod, 2006)2
What do Douglas Coupland’s abundant – and frequently conflicting –
images of the future reveal about his worldview? Does his writing and
visual art aspire to represent the innovative and the imminent, that is,
to forge new ideas in a seemingly exhausted, derivative era? His novels
occupy a perplexing hinterland between Tyler Johnson’s irrepressible
ambivalence about national affiliations – isolates a broader set of issues
that are vital, not just for Coupland’s many lonely or alienated
characters, but also to the aesthetic and ethical implications of his work.
This book – the first full-length study of Coupland’s writing –
explores the prolific first decade and a half of his career, from
Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture (1991) to JPod (2006),
a period in which he published ten novels and four significant
volumes of non-fiction. Since the publication of his debut novel,
Coupland has been exploring the