J. G. Ballard: High-Rise

(1196 words)

Ballard's novel High-Rise (1975) begins three months after a series of unusual events in which the inhabitants of a London tower block descend into barbarity and madness. Robert Laing, a medical doctor and a key figure in the novel, is sitting on the balcony of his apartment reflecting on the event that first signalled this return to primordial being: the explosive appearance of a champagne bottle knocked onto his 25th floor veranda from a party taking place six floors above. This striking image ā€“ a representation of civility falling into violence and self-destruction ā€“ provides the framing idea for a story concerned with atavistic degeneration, violence and psychological breakdown, urban space and its effects uā€¦

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Waddell, Nathan. "High-Rise". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 15 January 2010
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=4753, accessed 01 July 2015.]

Related Groups

  1. Dystopian and Apocalyptic Fiction