• Harald Pittel deposited Fiction in Dark Times: The Brexit Novel and Ali Smith on Humanities Commons 1 year, 6 months ago

    The 2016 vote to leave the European Union has incited many tormenting debates regarding the present state and future development of British society. Contemporary novelists are reacting differently to this situation, giving rise to what some reviewers have labelled “the post-referendum novel”, “Brexit fiction” or simply “Brexlit”. It seems well worth investigating what constitutes this emergent strand of literature in terms of common themes and shared prospects. How do authors with different backgrounds approach the referendum and its implications? To what extent can such fiction be understood as a new phenomenon, or even genre in its own right? And which are the strategies chosen to make literature function as political engagement? After a general survey of the field, this article will have a closer look at Ali Smith’s Autumn and Winter, often hailed as the landmarks of Brexit fiction.