6. februar 2024

’KLIMA HISTORIER’ The Art Of Imagining A Green Future

’KLIMA HISTORIER’ The Art Of Imagining A Green Future.

IND’s studenterserie nr. 115, 2024, Speciale - Climate change.

Julie Sloth Bjerrum

Vejleder: Sabrina Vitting-Seerup


This study addresses the potentials and problems in the anthology ‘Klimahistorier’, published in collaboration by the Ministry of Climate, Politikens Forlag and eight Danish writers. The research is motivated by the need for action in the climate crisis, where climate fiction is seen as a potential solution. However, research upon the impact of climate fiction to create social change needs furthering. By employing a constructivist and qualitative research approach, this case study analyzes the political context surrounding the Ministry of Climate’s involvement and conducts focus group interviews to explore readers’ interpretations of two excerpts from ‘Klimahistorier’. This study reveals that while ‘Klimahistorier’ has great intentions for inspiring for change, the readers are left with a sense of powerlessness. The political context influences the anthology’s potential, with emphasis on propaganda, commissioned work, and abdication of responsibility from the ministry.
Moreover, the narrative style and quality of the stories has the readers feeling both frustrated, provoked and entertained. They emphasis that they lack representation in the stories for them to emotionally invest, and they are challenged in distinguishing the fictional from factual both in relation to the political context and instrumentalization, and in relation to the facts about the climate crisis, as the stories were characterized by caricature and an exaggerated style. ‘Klimahistorier’ may not have consciously made readers more critical or motivated in their personal actions towards the green transition, however it made the readers reflect upon the diversity of perspectives in the climate crisis amongst the public, and the need for organized efforts to enable discussions upon the climate crisis. Moreover, the study contributes to the field, with the finding of the importance of representation in climate fiction for reader involvement. Therefore, this study suggests a case-based approach for future research, highlighting the need to focus on specific works rather than climate fiction in the abstract.
Overall, the discussion provides an understanding of the intersection between art, science, and politics as well as the potentials and problems associated with using climate fiction as a tool for communication and social change. In conclusion, this study finds that ‘Klimahistorier’ holds theoretical potential for creating social imaginaries, however the political context affects its realization, marking it as a potential rather than a realized tool for social change.