Adam Haley, PhD

CONFERENCE TALK: Apocalyptic Imaginaries and the Aesthetics of Imminent End

Where dystopia in fiction and film typically suggests itself as a kind of anti-aesthetic space, the possibilities of beauty and imagination having been expunged by some constricting totality, contemporary apocalyptic narratives often fixate on aesthetic possibility over and against a landscape that seems to foreclose it.

ARTICLE: Traveling Through Corporate Time: Inevitability and (Anti-)Corporate Narrative Form

Insofar as futurity continues to take on increasing significance as an object of rhetorical struggle, economic investment, and political imagination, its ongoing restructuring by corporate entities assumes great urgency. But the corporation’s influence on the structures of future-thinking goes beyond real-world corporate ownership of cultural production and distribution venues; it has to do, rather, with the corporation’s own narrative machinery, the ramifications that that machinery has outside of the corporate assemblage, and the way that machinery interfaces across legal, political, economic, and cultural registers.

CONFERENCE TALK: Life in (Un)Death: In the Flesh, the Medicated Undead, and the Limits of the Biopolitical

What happens when the zombie itself becomes subject to the very regime for which it has been such an indispensable rhetorical figure? What happens when the rhetoric of zombification and the control measures it makes indispensable fold back in on themselves, in the form of biopolitical regulation of zombiedom itself?

CONFERENCE TALK: The Fantastical Unmanned: Techne, Genre, and the (Super)Naturalized Drone

Does reorienting our thought away from the individual drone apparatus and toward the regime of drones (a collective force of omnipotence and omnipresence, both within and above our natural surroundings) open up new avenues of thinking about life under the aegis of the drone? In other words, is one drone a science-fictional technology, but a fleet of drones a fantastical monster—and if so, is this the monster most emblematic of the present?

CONFERENCE TALK: The Futures of Work and Self: Fluid Humanity and Laboring Identities in Contemporary Science Fiction

The danger of the demands for fluid laboring identities, voiced by and within austerity regimes, is not that they might lead to catastrophic digital technologies of control and domination. It’s that those demands are themselves but the latest release of much older technologies, technologies that have proven terrifyingly apt at constraining selves, dictating labor, and coding identity as just another practice of profit and accumulation.

ENGL 30: Writing the Future

This course will focus on the persuasive and philosophical uses of the future, and on the importance of implicit and explicit claims about the future to so many rhetorical acts. Taking as its thematic content various fictional and nonfictional imaginings of the future—some explicitly argumentative, some less so—we will investigate how visions of the future function rhetorically and how they constitute arguments about and calls to action in the present.

ENGL 191: Science Fiction

Science fiction has long occupied a strange, somewhat precarious position in Western culture. Popular but nerdy, lucrative but marginalized, the stuff of dreams but the butt of jokes, it is both a driving force behind literary history and a counter-tradition at the margins of that history.

CONFERENCE TALK: It’s the End of the World, But Not As We Know It: Means, Ends, and Beginnings in the Ideology of Apocalypse

What if the end by which we’ve been so captivated were to confront us in its utter inscrutability? What if the violent eruption we’ve feared and desired for so long—an eruption that poststructuralism tells us is not a transgression of the system but an inevitable product of it and its very condition of possibility—were to surpass the boundaries of our imaginations, the boundaries of our ideologically directed constructions of it?