Worlds collide and universes collapse in the novels and films explored in College of the Mainland’s Post-Apocalyptic Lit course, back by popular demand this fall.

From the action-packed “Divergent” by Veronica Roth to poetic “The Dog Stars” by Peter Heller, the class explores literature and films examining a possible, not-so-brilliant future.
Incorporating elements of sci-fi, fantasy and thrillers, the novels and films are loved by all ages.
Facilitated by COM professor of 11 years Stacey Burleson, the class launched last year to positive student reviews.
“It appeals to a broader group of people. These books touch on things that are issues in society,” explained Burleson. “In ‘Snow Crash’ (by Neal Stephenson) you have a virtual world. It was written in 1994, so the author sort of foresaw the future.”
The class serves as an elective or English credit and credit transfers to universities.
“It’s created some really good conversations about the world around us,” said Burleson. “We might not like something in society, but we can only change things if we’re aware.”
In addition to themes and motifs, the class focuses on universal issues – population growth, disease and government regulations – and of course, how to survive a catastrophe.
Burleson remembers one such discussion.
“We talked about different (disaster) scenarios. I joked, ‘I'm going out in the first flash of light.’ They said, ‘No, now that you’ve read all of these books, you have to stay and guide us.’”
To register for the class, visit