‘Final Frontiers is path breaking not only in being the first book-length study of non-Anglophone Indian science fiction, but also in Mukherjee’s provocative consideration of the form alongside the “combined and uneven” historical axes of Cold War Non-Alignment, Nehruvian techno-scientific policy, and Indian modernization in the twentieth-century world-system. This intelligent, sophisticated, and scrupulous book makes a much-needed contribution to postcolonial studies, science fiction studies, world literature studies, and cultural studies and will no doubt inform scholarly conversation in these fields for some time to come.'
Eric D. Smith, University of Alabama in Huntsville
This is the first book-length study of the relationship between science fiction, the techno-scientific policies of independent India, and the global non-aligned movement that emerged as a response to the Cold War and decolonization. Today, we see the trend of science fiction writers being used by governments as advisors on techno-scientific policies and defence industries. But such relationships between literature, policy and geo-politics have a long and complex history. Glimpses of this history can be seen in the case of the first generation of post-colonial Indian science fiction writers, the policies of scientific and technological development in independent India, and the political strategy of non-alignment advocated by India’s first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, who proposed that Third World nations should maintain an equal distance between Washington and Moscow. Such a perspective reveals the surprisingly long and relatively unknown life of Indian science fiction, as well as the critical role played by the genre in imagining alternative pathways for scientific and geo-political developments to those that dominate our lives now.
'This is an exciting and vital new work in the field of sf studies. Its focus on an under-represented set of authors is welcome; its analytical frameworks are contemporary and productive, and give new and exciting insights and directions to the fields of sf studies, energy humanities and world-literature.'
Rhys Williams, University of Glasgow