Arrivals: The Ends of the Earth
This chapter presents some closing thoughts on the key concepts discussed in the preceding chapter of this book. The book has been concerned with describing and exploring science fiction texts and how the universes of science fiction work in the reading experience. It presents one view of metaphor that has come to be central to 'cognitive poetics'. Scholes and Rabkin trace utopian writing from Plato onwards, beginning with slave societies that are utopian only for the elite readership. The book describes the linguistic and cognitive mechanisms by which alternative universes could be expressed in science fiction. By implication, believe that the detail of the conceptual mapping is important for individual readers, and that all these texts are readable. The book discusses different ways in which science fiction manages the cognitive processes involved in configuring richly textured social architectures. Absolute utopia, absolute dystopia, total apocalypse and transcendent transformations are the ultimate expressions of these forms.