Hollow Earth

John Kinsella

Hollow Earth
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Hollow Earth

John Kinsella

Fascinated by caves and digging holes since childhood,  Manfred discovers a path through to another realm via a Neolithic copper mine at Mount Gabriel in Schull, Ireland. The world of Hollow Earth, while no Utopia, is a sophisticated civilisation. Its genderless inhabitants are respectful of their environment, religious and cultural differences are accommodated without engendering hate or suspicion, and grain not missile silos  are built. Yet Ari and Zest accompany Manfred back to the surface world. `Come  with me and see my world.‘         

So begins an extraordinary adventure in which the  three wander the Earth like Virgil’s Aeneas, Ari and Zest seeking re-entry to  their own world. The Hollow Earthers are shocked at the cruelty and lies of the  surface world, the dieback spreading through the forests. Yet they are seduced  by the world’s temptations.   

Kinsella’s parable draws on a rich tradition of Hollow Earth literature and science fiction  including Bradshaw’s The Goddess of Atvabar (1892). With strange beauty, its alluring trajectory vividly captures  our 21st century world in crisis. Like Manfred we are often blindly complicit  in the earth’s downfall.      

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