From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
An artist's depiction of nanotechnology.

Nanopunk refers to an emerging subgenre of science fiction that is still very much in its infancy in comparison to its ancestor-genre, cyberpunk,[1][2] and some of its other derivatives.[3]

The genre is especially similar to biopunk,[4] but describes a world where nanites and bio-nanotechnologies are widely in use and nanotechnologies are the predominant technological forces in society.

Currently the genre is mainly concerned with the artistic, psychological,[2] and societal impact of nanotechnology, rather than aspects of the technology which itself is still in its infancy. Unlike cyberpunk, which can be distinguished by a gritty and low-life yet technologically advanced character, nanopunk can have a darker dystopian character that might examine potential risks by nanotechnology as well as a more optimistic outlook that might emphasize potential uses of nanotechnology.[5][4]


  • Scooby Apocalypse (2016–2019) reveals early on that a nanite virus originating from Velma's 'Elysium Project' experiment is the reason behind people becoming monsters.


  • Kathleen Ann Goonan (Queen City Jazz – 1997) and Linda Nagata were some of the earliest writers to feature nanotech as the primary element in their work.[2]
  • Another example of this genre is Neal Stephenson's The Diamond Age.[6] Some novels of Stanislaw Lem, including Weapon System of the Twenty First Century or The Upside-down Evolution, The Invincible and Peace on Earth as well as Greg Bear's Blood Music could also be considered precursors of nanopunk.
  • Another example is the Michael Crichton novel Prey (2002).[3][4][7] Another of Crichton's novels, Micro (2011), could also be an example, but it focuses more on the idea of size-manipulation/shrinking of objects rather than nanotechnology. More recently, Nathan McGrath's Nanopunk (2013) is set in an icebound near-future where almost half the world's population has been wiped out. Alister, a child when "The Big Freeze" began is now a teenager in a society slowly finding its feet. Unaware of his nano-infection he sets out to find his lost sister and is joined by Suzie, a militant cyber-activist. Their hacking attracts the attention of Secret Services and a ruthless private military corporation and their search becomes a deadly race for survival.
  • Linda Nagata's Tech Heaven (1995) is a futuristic thriller about Katie, a woman whose husband is about to die of injuries sustained in a helicopter crash. Instead of dying, he gets his body cryogenically preserved so that he can be reawakened when med-tech is advanced enough to heal him. The problem is that it winds up taking far more than the estimated few years for this to happen.[8]
  • Alastair Reynolds' Chasm City could also be considered nanopunk.[9]

Film and television[edit]



Video games[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Cochran, Tanya R.; Ginn, Sherry; Zinder, Paul (2014). The Multiple Worlds of Fringe: Essays on the J.J. Abrams Science Fiction Series. p. 156. ISBN 978-0-7864-7567-4. Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  2. ^ a b c Newitz, Annalee (17 January 2008). "io9 Talks to Kathleen Ann Goonan About Nanopunk and Jazz". Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Nanopunk, Definition and Examples of Nanotechnology Based Nanopunk Speculative Science Fiction". AZoNano. June 12, 2007. Retrieved January 24, 2021.
  4. ^ a b c "Nanopunk Science Fiction".
  5. ^ Huereca, Rafael Miranda. "The evolution of cyberpunk into postcyberpunk - The role of cognitive cyberspaces, wetware networks and nanotechnology in science fiction" (PDF). Retrieved 19 May 2015. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  6. ^ Sohn, Stephen Hong (2008). "Alien/Asian: Imagining the Racialized Future" (PDF). 33 (4). The Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States (MELUS). Retrieved 19 May 2015. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  7. ^ Johnson, Reed (December 22, 2003). "A quantum leap". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 24, 2021.
  8. ^ Newitz, Annalee (December 22, 2006). "Underrated SF Classic: Linda Nagata's "Tech Heaven" (review)". Wired News.
  9. ^ Heikkilä, Ville (November 2013). "Restoration of identity from space in Alastair Reynolds's Chasm City" (PDF). Retrieved 19 May 2015. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)