Date of Award




Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Department of English

Content Description

1 online resource (v, 85 pages) : illustrations (some color)

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Mike Hill

Committee Members

Aashish Kaul


Amitav Ghosh, Climate change, Nonhuman, Technological derangement, Technological enlightenment, Literature and technology, Technology, Climatic changes, Technological literacy, Progress, Imagination, Realism in literature

Subject Categories

Arts and Humanities | English Language and Literature | Library and Information Science


In the age of climate change, the Indian writer Amitav Ghosh asks whether humanity is prepared for the unthinkable nature of climate events. The Earth’s climate is changing faster than humans can expect and adapt. Ghosh warns that modern people are too deranged to imagine in what forms of changes are approaching. His term, derangement, suggests that humans are no longer able to imagine the future world shaped by climate change. The signals of the unexpectable realities of climate change, however, may be hidden in existing knowledge. Here, technology can help us access this hidden knowledge through its ability to re-access the past, and most importantly, enlarge our sense of what constitutes the archive. In this project, I affirm Ghosh’s claim about derangement, but I also argue that modern people are deranged because they lack technological ability, rather than simply being hindered by it.This thesis looks at the role of technology in tackling climate change. Through this thesis, I intend to demonstrate how technology can be useful in addressing climate change. While Ghosh suggests that technological development caused by colonial capitalism of Western modernity has led to the current planetary crisis, I argue that it is human’s misuse of technology due to their technological derangement that caused the global crisis. I maintain that every type of technology, not just digital media and information technology, but also writing, has potential to engage with the realities of the past that have not been found yet. I differ from Ghosh on a second point as well. Whereas he sees nonhuman agency only in the new genre fiction calls for, I point out that nonhuman agency is given, but unseen, in literary realism as well. Technology, which has power to re-visit the past and expand our concept of history, can offer a new perspective. This new perspective allows data practitioners, historians, and literary critics alike to identify the hidden realities of nature, especially, nonhuman agencies. By doing so, technology can help human beings create new knowledge of the past and act better in the present and future.