Louise Bethlehem deposited Lauren Beukes’s post-apartheid dystopia: inhabiting Moxyland in the group LLC African since 1990 on MLA Commons 7 years, 3 months ago
This article reads South African science-fiction writer Lauren Beukes’s first novel, Moxyland (2008) set in a futuristic Cape Town, from the perspective of Lindsay Bremner’s notion of “citiness”– or how cities produce the modernity of the subjects who inhabit them. The novel is remarkable for its dependence on the social geography of the South African city. This article charts Beukes’s resolutely mobile focalizers as they negotiate the spatial itineraries and technologies of governance in which they are embedded. It explores how Beukes’s futuristic urban setting fuses punitive forms of digital technology with the biopolitical regulation of social relations in an unsettling reprise of the apartheid groundplan. My reading positions Moxyand in relation to discussions of African city textualities–a critical rubric introduced by Ranka Primorac in this journal–the better to explore how the novel makes history of dystopia.