After Engulfment: Cosmicism and Neocosmicism in H. P. Lovecraft, Philip K. Dick, Robert A. Heinlein, and Frank Herbert (Paperback)
In this pioneering work of criticism, spanning the genres of weird fiction and science fiction, Ellen J. Greenham examines H. P. Lovecraft's influence on canonical science fiction writers and the use of Lovecraft's cosmicism as a lens through which selected works by Philip K. Dick, Robert A. Heinlein, and Frank Herbert can be interpreted. Put simply, After Engulfment examines the experience of being human in an impersonal universe.
In Greenham's analysis, Lovecraft's cosmicism offers human beings limited options in madness or death as responses to the inescapable revelation of their own insignificance and ephemerality in the universe. The neocosmicism of Dick, Heinlein, and Herbert offers another pathway in the framework for how humans might respond when facing engulfment. Rather than yielding to despair, neocosmicism offers an experience that leads to the revitalisation of the human's relationship with the universe it inhabits.
In its broad reach and keen, sensitive study of many of the leading texts of 20th-century horror and science fiction, After Engulfment presents a new way of looking at Lovecraft and his literary legacy.