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Set Your Clock Right: Science Fiction Time in the Modernist-Postmodernist Transition

Marcia Tiemy Morita Kawamoto
University of St. Andrews; Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina
Abstract—Time can be a tricky aspect in any narrative study. Different from space, which it is generally associated with, time cannot be physically grasped. As space, time is a reference, a resource for orientation. We found our ways to measure it, but we cannot control it. The current paper does not attempt to discuss the complexities of subjective time. It rather aims at discussing the representations of time in the modernist and postmodern contexts. The justification/argument is that the narrativization of temporality in fiction mirrors its own social time. As a consequence, time conveys distinct meanings in different contexts; it unveils itself as a product of its own the historical time. Thus, this paper argues that the representation of time, in how fictional texts deal with it in the transition and intersection of modernist and postmodern periods has changed. The analysis focuses on the representation of the city and the main characters, the time travelers, in science fiction films, since they tend to problematize temporality more explicitly on three movies: Things to Come (1936), Twelve Monkeys (1995) and Source Code (2011).

Index Terms—time, science fiction film, modernism, postmodern period

Cite: Marcia Tiemy Morita Kawamoto, "Set Your Clock Right: Science Fiction Time in the Modernist-Postmodernist Transition," Journal of Media & Mass Communication, Vol. 1, No. 1, pp. 25-29, June, 2015. doi: 10.12720/jmmc.1.1.25-29
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