The Doomsday Machine
president wilson. Six months ago, I was made aware of a
situation so devastating that, at first, I refused to believe it.
However, through the concerted efforts of our brightest scien-
tist, we have confirmed its validity. The world, as we know it,
will soon come to an end.
In the film 2012, science provided a means of monitoring doomsday, and technology a way of avoiding it. An American scientist learnt of the Earth’s core overheating while advanced technology, built in China, offered four Noah’s Arks to fend off the coming storm. Together, science and technology delivered salvation, circumvented the end of the world. The reality of the disasters studied here paints a different picture. Instead, science and technology helped create the symbolic antithesis of Noah’s Ark: a doomsday machine. Along with political misdirection, a capitalist structure, and an immersive catastrophe culture, science and technology served as two driving forces behind disaster, providing the grim mechanics of inviting doomsday.
As we have seen, the advent of new technology regularly serviced narratives of conquest and environmental despoliation in the United States. On the nineteenth-century frontier, the firearm