Science fiction scholar Lisa Yaszek's recent book The Future Is Female! 25 Classic Science Fiction Stories by Women, from Pulp Pioneers to Ursula K. Le Guin, is a secret history of women in science fiction, reframing the story of exclusion ("women weren't welcome in early sf writing circles") as one of erasure ("women made vital contributions to early science fiction, and these were systematically expunged from the record when the first wave of historical sf anthologies were published, as part of a backlash against first-wave feminism").
Yaszek's work is very personal to me, dealing extensively with Judith Merrill, the great feminist sf writer, editor and critic, who was my mentor growing up in Toronto.
In a new interview with the Geek's Guide to the Galaxy podcast (MP3), Yaszek elaborates on her work and its ramifications for how we think about the story of the future.
“[Campbell] was going on and on about how women can’t write science fiction, and [Merril] said, ‘Well, I bet I could write a science fiction story you’d buy,’ and he said, ‘I don’t think that’s going to happen,’ and she said, ‘I bet I could write a story you’ll buy, and you’ll beg me for more.’ … So she wrote [‘That Only a Mother’], and Campbell loved the story. He bought it from her, and he was like, ‘Oh my gosh. You were right, I was wrong. This is an amazing story. I want more from you.’ So she sent him her next story, which was a space colonization story—good standard science fiction fare—and he rejected it because he said, ‘There are no mothers in it. I don’t really want this from you. You should be writing more about mothers.'”
The History of Women in Sci-Fi Isn’t What You Think [Geek's Guide to the Galaxy/Wired]
Attentive reader will note that rogue archivist Carl Malamud (previously) published the laws of Georgia -- including the paywalled annotations to the state laws -- in 2015, prompting the state to sue him and literally call him a terrorist; Malamud countersued in 2015 and won a huge victory in 2018, when the US Court of […]
Arend Smith -- AKA Ravendark Creations -- is an Etsy seller who sculpts beautiful monsters in a variety of materials, ranging from the Snailien (3.75" x 4.25" x 7", resin, $150) to the Miskatonic Bookworm (6.5" x 6" x 11"; resin, chicken quills, epoxy, many finishes available, $275) which is also available as a Chrysalis […]
Back in 2017, Andrea wrote about Plane Industries gorgeous chairs made from the cowling of the (now notorious) Boeing 737's jets; now, the company has followed up with a smaller, more practical chair, this one fashioned from a BAe-146's jet cowling, still featuring the company's "high gloss shell and dark Alcantara interior."
From your apartment door to your bike lock, it’s not uncommon to carry a number of different keys on your keyring, but that doesn’t make it any more bearable when you’re fussing to find the right one or deal with the infamous pocket bulge. The KeySmart Pro’s smart design cuts down on key clutter and […]
Happy DNA Day! April 25 is a day to recognize deoxyribonucleic acid – better known as the molecule that holds the code to our entire genetic makeup. What better way to celebrate than with a complete ancestry test that’s about more than just satisfying idle curiosity about your family tree? The lab techs at Vitagene use […]
For musicians, clubgoers or anyone in the thick of a loud environment, earplugs aren’t just an option. If you plan on keeping your hearing through sustained exposure to levels over 85 decibels (roughly the sound of a blender), they’re a must. The good news is, most earplugs will muffle the sound. The bad news is, […]