SFRA Review

SFRA Review

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SFRA Review
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Science Fiction Research Association review
Science Fiction Research Association
Place of Publication:
Eugene, Ore
Science Fiction Research Association
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Subjects / Keywords:
Science fiction -- History and criticism -- Periodicals ( lcsh )
Fantasy fiction -- History and criticism -- Periodicals ( lcsh )
Science fiction -- Book reviews -- Periodicals ( lcsh )
Fantasy fiction -- Book reviews -- Periodicals ( lcsh )
non-fiction ( marcgt )
serial ( sobekcm )


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University of South Florida Library
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University of South Florida
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S67-00034-n273-2005-07_08_09 ( USFLDC DOI )
s67.34 ( USFLDC Handle )

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July/ Au. Sept 1t1t1 Editor: Chrlis_line Malins H3n3ging Etlitor: Janlice M. Boas_ad Nonfiction Reriews: Ed McHnliah_ Fiction Reriews: Philip Snyder The SFRAReview (ISSN 1068-395X) is published four times a year by the Science Fiction Research Association (SFRA) and distributed to SFRA members. Individual issues are not for sale; however, starting with issue #256, all issues will be published to SFRA's website no less than 10 weeks after paper publication. For information about the SFRA and its benefits, see the description at the back of this issue. For a membership application, contact SFRA Treasurer Donald M. Hassler or get one from the SFRA website: . SFRA would like to thank the Univer sity of Wisconsin-Eau Claire for its as sistance in producing the SFRAReview. SUBMISSIONS The SFRAReview encourages all submis sions, induding essays, review essays that cover several related texts, and inter views. If you would like to review non fiction or fiction, please contact the respective editor. Christine Mains, Editor Box 66024 Caigary,AB T2N I N4 Janice M. Bogstad, Managing Editor 239 Broadway St. Eau Claire WI 54703-5553 Ed McKnight, Nonfiction Editor I 13 Cannon Lane Taylors SC 29687 Philip Snyder, Rction Editor 109 Northumberland Road Rochester NY 14618 Science Fiction Research Association SFIUI Re",e", III ... HIS ISSUE: SFRA Business Editor's Message 2. President's Message 2. Report from SFRA 2.005 3 Minutes of the Board 3 Clareson Award: Introduction 7 Clareson Award: Acceptance 7 Pioneer Award: Introduction 9 Pioneer Award: Acceptance 10 Pilgrim Award: Introduction 12. Pilgrim Award: Acceptance I 3 Mary Kay Bray Award: Introduction 15 Grad Student Award: Acceptance Ie Non Fiction Reviews 'Alias' Assumed I 7 ProJections I 8 Encyclopedia of SF 2.0 Inside the World of Pullman 2.1 Liminal Lives 2.2. H.G. Wells's The Time Machine 2.4 Voices of Vision 2.4 Dying Planet 2.5 Fiction Reviews Cultural Breaks 2.7 Century Rain 2.7 Llvel from Planet Earth 2.8 Nine Muses 30


) News Items: The World Fantasy Awards will be presented at World Fantasy Con in Madison,Wisconsin during the weekend of November 3-6. Novel: Susanna Clarke, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell; Stephen R. Donaldson, The Runes Of the Earth; China Mieville, Iron Council; Sean Stewart, Perfect Circle; GeneWolfe, The Wizard Knight Novella: leena Krohn, "Tainaron: Mail from Another City"; Kim Newman, "Soho Golem"; Michael Shea, "The Growlimb"; Lisa Tuttle, "My Death"; Gene Wolfe, "Golden City Far". Short Fiction: Theodora Goss, "The Wings of Meister Wilhelm"; Margo Lanagan, "Singing My Sister Down"; Kelly Link, "The Faery Handbag"; China Mieville, "Re ports of Certain Events in london"; Barbara Roden, "Northwest Pas sage".Anthology: The Faery Reel:Tales from the Twilight Realm ed. Ellen Datlow & TerriWindling;Polyphony 4 ed. Deborah Layne & Jay Lake; AcquaintedWith The Night ed. Barbara & Christopher Roden; Dark Matter: Reading The Bones ed. Sheree R.Tho mas; The First Heroes: New Tales of the Bronze Age ed. Harry Turtledove & Noreen Doyle. Collection: Peter Crowther, Songs Of Leaving; John M. Ford, Heat Of Fusion and Other Stories; Eileen Gunn, Stable Strategies And Others; Margo Lanagan, BlackJuice; Joe R. lansdale, Mad Dog Summer and Other Stories: Ian R. Macleod. Breathmoss and Other luc.ius Tc.;;iik_ AJ'.:. "'Qln loii.III"i.r'd:L, 1!l1.'!, C;ur:il'!i'lilr: ;\r;ll!lr,t.!:, .,c,"b ,In, Ih.o11ln, iungjll:lh mo'!: ,t' .. \",1,' l ,r ":. c.,"" il111 E-'r.',t;/':' ( SFRA BUSINESS Edjtor's Messaae Christine Mains Looks like I don't have to be a broken record this issue, as President Dave Mead does the honors for me in his message below. 1bis issue is chock full of conference-related content speeches from the award winenrs and those who introduced them, and reports on the conference from the organizers and on the meeting of the executive board, including a finan cial report from Treasurer Mack Hassler. Also in this issue is a reprint of a review from the last issue, which was mistakenly attributed to the wrong reviewer. My apologies to Mark Decker for printing his review under the wrong name, and my assurances that steps have been taken to change the editorial procedure to avoid similar errors in future. SFRA BUSINESS Presjdent's Messaae Dave Mead Well, the annual meeting in Las Vegas has come and gone, an apparent success for all involved (if I do say so myself). 123 persons paid to attend, includ ing a few one-day visitors from Las Vegas. With guests, about 135 came to the awards banquet, where Gerard Klein (Pilgrim), Lisa Yaszek (pioneer), Muriel Becker (Clareson), Bruce Beatie (Mary Kay Bray), and Melissa Colleen Stevenson (Best Graduate Student Paper at SFRA 2004) were recognized. A special award to Alice Clareson was also announced. The Conference was able to return the SFREs subsidy, plus a little extra. Some of the extra funds came from the book room, run ably by Ron Larson and Joe Berlant. Special thanks to those who donated books, particularly Joan Gordon and Tor Books. We are most grateful for the attendance of our guest authors Ursula K Le Guin,John Barnes, Kij Johnson, Tim Powers, Joan Slonczewski, Elizabeth Bear and Steven Brust. Their presence and participation was a highlight of the meeting. We are all looking forward to next year's meeting, which will be held in White Plains, NY. Look for news of the meeting on the website soon. Oscar De Los Santos and Tom Morrissey are hosting SFRA 2006 and have promised a strong list of guest authors, including Nancy Kress and Distinguished Guest Author Nonnan Spinrad. Prejidential Admonition (You Know Who You Are) Re\-iewers must do a better job of sending their reviews to the Editors Ed and Phil Snyder in a timely wa}, SFRA Review Editor Chrissie I.l nn:d of fusJoing about tlus, so it is my tum to remind those who accept i 1:. Ec::tro!l! (;', :J")'Q-5.:1".:00 tr;..-;,ik fOf re,iew that reviewing is a privilege and a profes ?;.e,=mg fryr The SFRA Rm'ew is not a trivial or secondary ,a:d rid;"::,':r";e:, u;,ptct The Review cannot operate on any sort of schedule :.if ci,c,I:'rr!,":'rJd In their work quickly. If you are one of those who have commit yourself now to turning in reviews faster. Gunn Assistantship at University if Kansas -:--:'JO: Execun,e Committee has voted to donate $1000 to support the Gunn ill the Center for SF Studies at the University of Kansas. The Gunn

Fantasy. Changes at Extrapolatiol1 At the executive committee meeting in Las Vegas, the editors of ExtrapoZa tiOfl-through Mack Hassler expressed some concern that SFR.. -\ might object to the changes the journal is making in its publication schedule (moving from four to three issues annually). The Executiye Committee voted to express the SFRXs continued support of the journal as it makes what changes it must. SFRA2007? ,-\t present, we have no venue or host(s) for the a1UlUal meeting in 2007. ,\t this year's meeting I spoke to some members from the northwest about the pos sibility of having our 2007 meeting in Portland, Oregon or perhaps Seattle, \Vash ington. At the business meeting, it was also suggested that we mIght go to the southeast instead. If you have ideas about where we might go yearafter-next or if you would be willing to host the meeting, please email your ideas me at SFRA BUSINESS A Report Irom SFRA 200S Dave Mead and Peter Lowentrout We want to thank everyone who came to the annual meeting in Las Vegas. You helped make the event a great success. It was one of the larger meetings we have had. Of course, we are especially grateful to the guest authors who can1e and participated: Ursula K. Le Guin, Tim Powers, Kij Johnson, John Barnes, Steven Brust, Elizabeth Bear and Joan Slonczewski. We want to thank our universities Texas ,\&M .Corpus Christi and California State University Long Beach for supporting our work on the confer ence. Dave's Dean, Dr. Richard Gigliotti, was particularly generous in underwriting the mailing of the call for papers, etc. i\nd we really want to say thank you to our spouses and families Sherwood Smith and Joan 1\lead, especially for their help in making the conference successful. Sherwood was instrumental in bringrng so many fine autl10rs to the conference, while Joan wrangled the Registration Desk (,md with daughter Jennifer Shields desigt1ed our line of fashion clothing). ,-\t last count, there were 123 paid registrations (including a few one-day visitors from Las Vegas), as well as 7 guest authors, our Pilgrim winner Gerard Klein, and a few special helpers. \Ve think that 135 attencied the ,\wards Banquet. The conference will return around $3000 to the SFRXs general fund. SFRA BUSINESS Minutes 01 Business "eetins Warren G. Rochelle Call to Order: The Meeting of the Executive Committee was convened at approximately 7:30 a.m. Pacific Daylight Sa\'ings Time, on june 24, 2005, in the Emperor's B,mquet of the Imperial Palace Hotel and I_as Vegas. Present: Peter Brigg, l\bck Hassler, Christine l\lains, David "lead, \\'arren Rochelle. OFFICER and SFRA REVIEIVEDITOR REPORTS: SFR4 REI/JEW' Editor. Christine l\l;tins: The meeting began with a report from the S]-R,l ReYlew edItor, ChrisSll' ( livre en Les Memoires de rAre, by Michele Laframboise; Best ShortForm Work in English: "When the Morning Stars Sang Together," by Isaac Szpindel; Meilleure nouvelle en franc;:ais: "Ceux qui ne comptent pas," by Michele Laframboise; Best Work in English (Other): Relativity: Essays and Stories, by Robert J. Saw yer The Locus Awards were announced atWestercon Due North in Calgary on July 2. Best SF Novel: The Baroque Cycle (The Confusion and The System of the World), by Neal Stephenson; Best Fantasy Novel: Iron Council, by China Mieville; Best First Novel: Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, by Susanna Clarke; BestYA Book:A Hat Full of Sky, by Terry Pratchett; Best Novella:"Golden City Far", by Gene Wolfe; Best Novelette (tie):"Reports of Certain Events in London", China Mieville & "The Faery Handbag", Kelly Link; Best Short Story:"Forbid den Brides of the Faceless Slaves in the Nameless House of the Night of Dread Desire", Neil Gaiman; Best Anthology: The Year's Best Science Fiction: Twenty-First Annual Collection, Gardner Dozois (ed.); Best Collection: The John Varley Reader,John Varley; Best Non-Fiction Book: The Wave in the Mind, Ursula K. Le Guin John W. Campbell. Jr. Memorial award for best science fiction novel was presented for Market Forces. by Richard K. Morgan and the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award for best short fiction went to "Sergeant Chip" by Bradley Denton. BrianAldiss was awarded an Order of the British Empire in the Queen's birthday honors list for his services to literature. )


) The Hugo Awards were presented at Interaction in Glasgow onAugust 7. Best Novel: Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, by Susanna Clarke; Best No vella: "The Concrete Jungle," by Charles Stross; Best Novelette:"The Faery Handbag," by Kelly Link; Best Short Story:"Travels with My Cats," by Mike Resnick; Best Related Book: The Cambridge Companion to Science Fiction, edited by Edward James and Farah Mendlesohn; Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form: The Incredib/es, written & directed by Brad Bird; Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form: "33" -Battlestar Galactica, written by Ronald D. Moore and directed by Michael Rymer; Best Professional Editor: Ellen Datlow; Best Professional Artist: Jim Burns; Best Semiprozine: Ansib/e, edited by David Langford; Best Fanzine: Plokta, edited by Alison Scott, Steve Davies and Mike Scott; Best Fan Writer: David Langford; Best FanArtist:Sue Mason; BestWeb Site: SciFiction ( sciflction) edited by Ellen Datlow. The annual Mythopoeic Awards were presented at Tolkien 2005 in Birmingham, England on August 14. The fiction awards are given to works which exemplify "the spirit of the Inklings." Mythopoeic Fantasy Award, Adult Literature: Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, by Susanna Clarke; Mythopoeic Fantasy Award, Children's Literature:A Hat Full of Sky, by Terry Pratchett; Mythopoeic Scholarship Award in Inklings Stud ies: War and the Works ofJ.R.R. Tolkien, by Janet Brennan Croft; Mythopoeic Scholarship Award in Myth and Fantasy Studies: Robill Hood:A Mythic Biography, by Stephen Thomas Knight This year's Sidewise Awards for Alternate History were presented at ( I\lains, and discussion of what Christine described as an ongoing problem with the Retiewand the reason for the lateness of the most recent issue: the failure of book review writers to send in their work in a timely manner. She noted that this is a problem for both fiction and nonfiction reviews. Christine would like to be able to send some reviews back for revision, but she cannot do this if she does not receive them in a timely manner. Dave Mead said he would give this issue special attention in his next Rezieu' presidential message and would remind members that this is a professional activity ;md needs to be treated as such. Dave also commented on the tax status issue. SFR. -\ is ta.x-exempt, and is a 501((;) 7 organization; it should be 501 3 -\ccording to Janice Bogstad, our SFIV1 Re17eJ/s I\lanaging Editor, the University of \,\iisconsin-Eau Gaire, which is prin ting and mailing our SFRA Reziezv, is somewhat concerned that SFRA isn't a C-3 (educational group). Because we believe ourselves to be educational, we would like to be categorized as a C-3 rather than a C-7. The change would make UWEC happy (and m;ike our dues tax-deductible). Bruce has given us a report on his investIgatIon of the Issue. I\lack noted that he has taken care of renewing the organization's status as being incorporated in Ohio. \v'EBI\L\STER: No report given. PAST PRESIDENT, PETER BRlGG: Peter noted that it was time to start schmoozing with people who could possibly stand for office in the next election. l\lack agreed to run again for trea surer. \'\-'arren nuted that he could not run again, having reached the two-term limit for secretary. Christine, who will defend her dissertation this spring, might be available as a candidate. Everyone was urged to think of names. PRESIDENT, DAVID ME,-\D: Dave noted that everything was fine and as he was more illlmediately concemed with the conference, his report would be given in his role as conference co-director. V1CE PRESIDENT, BRUCE ROCKWOOD: Entce was unable to attend, but will give Dave information on the ta.x lillestion before the husiness meeting. TRE.-\SURER, l\L:\CK IL\SSLER: :--lack proVIded a balance sheet and noted that the organization was quite healthy financially, and currently has 288 members. He has not yet paid the sub scriptions for Exrrilpoklfioll. POlllldalioll, and FA. He does not yet know how much the annllal Directory will cost, and will not know until after the conference the final costs for conference support, student travel support, and the special recognition for, \Iice Clareson. SECRET.\RY, W,-\RREN ROCHELLE: \\'arren scnt out the second reminder to renew membership letters in Februarv. '!11Cre was a decent response to the follow-up letter. Since then he has been collectlllg retumed letters, which he is sending to l\lack so that they can be purt-,'l.'d from the database. I\linutes of the January Executive Committee meeting were sent to the Board and to the H.et7ew, where they were published. OLD Bll,<-;INES,<-;; em IER REPORTS: CONFERENCE DlRECTORS: 2nO'i CONFERENCE, Las Vegas, Nevada: DlRFCTC1H.S, nWID I\IF..\D

up fur the banquet, which will be the biggest banquet yet. He estimated there would be 140-145 attendees if all those expected show. Financially the conference is doing well. Registration fees totaled about $15,000. Expenses have included about $1000 for grad student scholarships, and about $800 to bring Gerard Klein, the Pilgrim winner, to Las Vegas. Each author-guest has cost about $1000. The Oareson plaque for Alice Oareson looks "gorgeous." Dave estimated that the $1000 seed money from SFRA would be repaid and that maybe a $1000 would be profit He will know more when there is a final accounting, but right now, we are in great shape. 2006 CONFERENCE, White Plains, NY: DIRECTORS, OSCAR DE LOS SANTOS and TO;"! MORRISEY: The theme, or one of the themes, will probably be global warming and ecological issues. Norman Spinrad will be the literary Guest of Honor. The hotel in White Plains is relatively close to the commuter train lines, so a NY visit by attendees will be easy. Oscar and Tom will give a short presentation at the general meeting. 2007 CONFERENCE: We discussed possible conference venues. We'd like to have a meeting in the Pacific Northwest. Dave has spoken to a few members about hosting the meeting. 2005 CONFERENCE, Dublin, Ireland: DIRECTORS, FARAH IvfENDLESOHN and EDWARD JA!\,fES: This is definite. NEW Pawel Frelik spoke to the EC about a publishing opportunity with the university press in Lublin, a book of the proceedings of this year's conference. Possible co-editors: Peter and Dave. There is financial support from PaweI's de partment and the university press; the latter has committed itself to the project. The estimated length of this book is around 180,000 words. The theme would be, as is this year's conference's theme, gambling, and the papers included would not all have to be presented at the conference. 20-22 papers was the number given as the total for the volume. It was noted that Peter could mention SFRA in the introduction. The fall of 2005 was given as a possible publication date. There was a discussion of a possible conflict with this volume. lvfike Levy has agreed to edit a special issue of Extrapolation on Le Guin and will call for conference papers to be submitted, although papers not given at the conference could be included. Mack, Pawel, and Dave said they would talk with Mike to be sure there are no conflicts. Mack moved that the Executive Committee endorse, support, and encourage these publication projects. The motion was seconded and passed unanimously. Extrapolation changes: Mack announced that Javier has made an editorial decision to go from 4 to 3 issues a year of Extrapolation, and he noted that.R'CtrapoLation needs reassurance that this is OK. Dave stated that SFRA acknowledged the necessary change as being made due to costs and supported the editor's decision to make this change. Dave asked that this information be published in the Retiew. SFRA support for the University of Kansas Gunn Assistantship: ( After discussion, it was agreed to support the assistantship with a $1000 one-time grant, with the possibility of renewing the grant in the future. Warren moved the SFRA do so, the motion was seconded, and passed unanimously. Business Meeting ,'\genda: Officer Reports Conference reports, including a presentation by De Los Santos and Morrissey ( 5) Interaction on August 5. Long Form: The Plot Against America, by Philip Roth; Short Form:"The Ministry of Space", byWarren Ellis, art by Chris Weston Recent and ForthcomingTitles: Anatol, Giselle, Liza. Reading Harry Pot ter: Critical Essays. Praeger, 2005. Fingeroth, Danny. Superman on the Couch:What Superheroes Really Tell Us About Ourselves and Our Society. Continuum, 2005. Porter, Lynnette R. Unsung Heroes of The Lord of the Rings: From the Page to the Screen. Praeger, 2005. Rabkin, Eric S. Mars:A Tour of the Human Imagination. Praeger, 2005. Rosenberg, Daniel and Susan Harding (eds.) Histories of the Future. Duke, 2005. Rosenfeld, Gavriel D. The World Hitler Never Made:Alternate History and the Memory of Nazism. Cambridge University Press, 2005. Snodgrass, Jon. Peace Knights of the Soul. InnerCircie Publishing, 2005. Westfahl, Gary. The Greenwood Encyclopedia of Science Fiction and fan tasy: Themes, Works, and Wonders. Greenwood, 2005. CfPs: WHAT:When Genres Collide WHO: SFRA 37th Annual Confer-ence WHEN: June 22-25. 2006 WHERE: Crowne Plaza Hotel,White Plains. NY TOPICS: Readers of science fiction are well aware of the intense crosspollination of SF and other genres. Science fiction has frequently dovetailed with fantasy and dark fantasy. Even in hard SF, readers often encounter variations of "ghosts" and "gods" in the stories.With the ever evolving cyberpunk movement, the rise of slipstream fiction and myster-)


) ies that hover on the cusp of mainstream even as they move into cyberpunkish territory, the boundaries between science fiction and related genres seem to be increas ingly blurred. Topics might include authors who have often burred boundaries in their stories (Norman Spinrad, Harlan Ellison, Ursula K. Le Guin, and Bruce Sterling), fresh interpretations of classic writers (Arthur C. Clarke and Robert A. Heinlein), and writers that move between science fiction and fantasy (Nancy Kress, Nalo Hopkinson, R. Garcia y Robertson, Ray Bradbury, Anne McCaffrey, Octavia Butler, Connie Willis, and Brian W.Aldiss). SUBMISSIONS: ISO-200-word pro posals to: DEADLINE: April IS, 2006 WHAT: Drawn by the Fantastic: Comics, GraphiC Novels, Art & literature WHO:ICFA 27 WHEN: March 15-19, 2006 WHERE:Wyndham Fort Lauderdale Airport Hotel TOPICS:The focus of ICFA-27 is on the fantastic in media other than the written word or film, including comics and graphic novels, web design and photo manipulation, cover art and illustration, picture books and pulps, film posters and CD covers, trading cards and tarot cards, cityscapes and landscapes, maps and tattoos and costuming, not to mention the stuff you hang on walls. Examine the role of art and artists as subjects of the fantastic, or the influence of the fantastic, written or filmed, on the world of art. Explore the construction of race and gender in images of vampires, elves, and aliens. In addition, we look forward to papers on the work of Guest of Tax status The meeting was adjourned at approximately 8:20 am. Science Fiction Research Association Income/Expenses for First Half of 2005 D.M. Hassler June 19,2005 Income Dues and separate subscriptions (284 members) Royalties received Scholar support gifts Book Sales Interest income Carryover from Mead as treasurer Total income Expenses Renewal mailing Reminder mailing Office expense Printing new brochures State of Ohio-non-profit status E.xecutive meeting Oanuary 2005) Ad in Nebula program Femspec support grant Grad student paper-M.e. Stevenson Trophy engraving Pilgrim expense (partial) Femspec subs NYRSF subs SFRAReview Science Fiction Studies subs Extrapolation subs Foundation subs JFA subs Directory Conference Support Student Travel Support Alice Clareson recognition Total expenses to date Cash on Hand -----------figures not yet available 23,322.25 1248.49 600.00 45.00 115.17 40.109.15 65.440.06 298.18 180.32 149.43 545.58 75.00 1585.60 75.00 500.00 100.00 38.59 921.56 500.00 1846.00 2253.00 3564.50 12,629.22 52,810.84 (-------------------------------------)


CLARESON AWARD Incroducc.on CO Mur.el Becker Joe Sanders It's very difficult to imagine the SFRA without Muriel Becker. Like most of us, Muriel has worked her critical and scholarly skills-the "research" part of our name-into publication. Among other things, she produced the Gregg Press bibliography of Clifford Simak in 1980, contributed to early editions of Neil Barron's Anatomy qf Wonder, and edited the Young Adult section of Collins and Latham's Science Fiction and Fanta.ry Book Review AnnuaL Also like most of us, Muriel has taught fantastic literature whenever pos sible. She started early, with an sf course for junior high students in 1960. She began teaching sf to college students in 1967, and continued offering popular sf and fantasy courses for the next thirty years. Even after retirement, she was invited back to teach a breakneck pre-session sf class. It was only natural that Muriel would join the Science Fiction Research Association as soon as she heard of it, in 1972. She attended her first conference in '73 and has been at 90% of the annual conferences since then. As a veteran mem ber, she has found herself working on many committees, serving a term as vice president, and inaugurating the Thomas D. Oareson Award as the first chair of its selection committee. These facts qualify Muriel to receive this year's Oareson award, but they don't explain the delighted reaction I received when I shared the news of her selection with members of the SFRA executive committee who know her. What Muriel has given the SFRA over the years is not just her scholarly-academic-organi zational resume but her generous, encouraging presence. For many of us new members, Muriel was the SFMs unofficial greeter. The reason she has been named to so many committees is that she works hard, cheerfully, and effectively. The reason we are happy to see her at these conferences is that she is smart, warm, and witty. She makes us laugh and think. She makes us better than we are. She has, over the years, given the SFRA service in many, many ways-especially as our ideal col league and friend. CLARESON AWARD Accepcance Speech Muriel Becker Thank you, Joe Sanders. Thank you for the wonderful things you've said about me, Muriel Becker. When I received the email from David Mead telling me that I had been selected as the "Oareson Award honoree for 2005, I shouted out" Oh, what joy! Thank you, Dave." [I did know he couldn't hear me.] My thanks too to the members of the selection committee aoe Sanders, Farah Mendelsohn and Neil Eas terbrook) and other SFRA members who offered their opinions to the committee. I'm reasonably certain Alice Oareson did. When I spoke to her last month, she said how much she regretted that she couldn't be with us today. You know, without Alice, the Thomas D. Oareson Award would not be the way it is. Alice made sure that Tom, her husband and partner, was memorial ized by an award that reflected the service both he and she gave particularly in the early years of SFRA and Extrapolation. I wish, too, that Charlotte Donsky, my frequent roommate at SFRA con ferences, who served on the first Clareson Award selection committee with Alice ( ( Honor Charles Vess. Guest Scholar M. Thomas Inge. and Special Guest Writer Kathleen Ann Goonan. As always, we also welcome proposals for individual papers and for aca demic sessions and panels on any aspect of the fantastic in any media. DEADLINE: 30 November 2005 INFO: . WHAT: Kubrick collection TOPICS:We are soliciting contribu tions for a collection of essays (to be published by McFarland and Company) which will address the work of Stanley Kubrick from a variety of new and fresh perspectives. In general, we are particularly inter ested in essays that synthesize analy ses of several Kubrick films as they relate to a particular topic, rather than single film studies. We particu larly encourage groundbreaking analysis and discussions of over looked aspects of Kubrick's work. Preference will be given to essays that are already completed or nearing completion. SUBMISSIONS:John Springer, Dept. of English, 100 North University Drive, University of Central Oklahoma, Edmond, OK 73034-5209. WHAT: Science, Literature, and the Western American Imagination TOPICS: In 1883, Matthew Arnold delivered an address to an American audience entitled"Literature and Science," in which he extolled the epistemological virtues of literature over science. A man can amass lists of facts about things, he explained, but sooner or later, he needs to re late them to the foundational in stincts of human nature for beauty and conduct. Only the "humane let ters" have the power to establish such relations, especially to what )


(8 ) Arnold calls the "new conceptions," i.e., science. For a critical collection on the relationship between science! technology and literary imagination in the American West, I seek essays that investigate the role and influ ence of science on writers and texts from the 18th century to the present moment. New analysis of canonical texts AND work that addresses the gendered, racialized, sexualized, and class-based struggles with science in the American West are welcome. How does scientific advance enter the imagination and practice of west ern American writers? How does sci ence shape the way western Ameri can writers represent self, land, and culture? How are Romanticism, sci entific materialism, modernism and postmodernism triangulated with science and theWest? How do inno vations in physics and astronomy, evolution and biology, and geological sciences figure in the western American literary imagination? How do specific examples of scientific boosterism and!or scientific skepti cism within the literature of the American West promote or resist the culture of progress, manifest destiny, regeneration through violence, or other deeply entrenched western American myths? SUBMISSIONS:Gioia Woods DEADLINE: Jan. 30, 2006 proposals, Aug. 30 completed articles WHAT: Exploring the Multiverse:A Study of the Works of Michael Moorcock WHO: Editor:Thomas Fortenberry. TOPICS: Submissions are invited for a new collection of essays studying the writings of British author Michael Moorcock. Moorcock has had a long and amazingly successful career as both editor and author. Winner of ( Oareson and me in 1995-96, was here as well. When I telephoned her to tell her of the honor I was to receive, I learned she had died this past January. I know those of you who were members in the 70's, 80's and 90's will recall the many wonderful arguments which Charlotte frequently initiated night after night in those then smoke-filled rooms or corridors. I can't quite recall where we were when the smoke alarm sounded, and we, "sedate professors & prestigious schol ars," were soundly chastised by the security people. It wasn't Evanston! There, men and women were restricted to separate floors. Does anyone remember where we were when the smoke alarm sounded not just once but twice? It's such memories of events, places, and people, more than the scholarly pride I have in the work I've accomplished or the satisfaction in the services I've rendered, that has made SFRA my lifelong passion-at any rate since 1973. That's the year I attended the 4th SFRA conference held at Penn State. Hosted by Arthur 0. Lewis & Philip Klass (aka William Tenn), Penn State is where I first met Tom Oareson andJames Gunn, Fred PoW, Theodore Sturgeon, Jack Williamson and others. You can imagine the effect on a lowly assistant professor who had just received administrative approval for a course in science fiction-approval undoubt edly influenced by my ability to cite the existence of SFRA itself and of Extrapo lation. I had serendipitously found out about SFRA just before I was to submit my proposal. I know it counts as little as the claim of the 1981 Pilgrim, Sam Moskowitz, that he had taught college science fiction before Mark Hillegas's 1962 course at Colgate-the recorded first u.s. science fiction course. Sam's claim was discounted because it was "only" a special lecture series on science fiction with guest speakers. I also taught science fiction before 1962, but mine was not even in the running. It was an elective in science fiction for 7th, 8th and 9th graders. Interestingly, only boys signed up--validating the old shibboleth that SF attracts the pre-pubescent male. The boys established an SF lending library, enjoyed doing book reports and oral reviews for class, and took Machiavellian delight at the start of each year in initiating new class members. The old timers fed the newbies ''Venus marsh rat eggs" and "Martian lizards"--actually caviar and frogs legs. I had fun too. I like caviar and frogs legs. And the boys read and read and read whatever they could from Aldiss to Zelazny and they talked and talked. When I transferred to Montclair State University, which had been first a normal school and then a teacher's college-a place where the faculty were at that time mos tly men and the students primarily women-my science fiction classes were predominantly young men. My later course in fantasy, on the other hand, had a more balanced population, but still attracted more males than any other English Department offering. In alternating semesters, these two courses were always oversubscribed. To my delight, and I'm sure to the chagrin of those colleagues who had originally tried to veto these courses, those courses, in addi tion to my responsibility for administering the Program for Future Teachers, resulted in my being the only English Department faculty member exempt from teaching remedial freshman composition. Since 1973, SFRA has given me the universe: constant support for my efforts to further the study of that literature I read by choice-resources for teaching; opportunities for presentations, reviews, research, interaction with au thors and editors; and friends with whom, though we meet but once a year, there IS never a lack of subjects about which to talk. As I've said earlier, I have a multitude of memories of events & places I would never have experienced without SFRA: presenting the Oareson Award to Jim Gunn in '97 and to Art Lewis in 2000 were highlights; the time several of us )


stopped at a restaurant on the way to the airport from the Kent conference in '85 and, in the time taken to have a snack, organized a superior panel on our secret SF vices C'space opera," "comics," "romances," and the like.) At least I think that was the subject---or maybe it was another year that we did "our vices." ... and there were such soul-satisfying ones as viewing the beautiful gardens in Midland !viichigan in 81 ... and funny ones: walking down the stairs of a very tall dorm building in rviilwaukee in '74 during a power outage and bonding with whomever we met in the stairwell; traversing the ravine each morning in San Diego in '86 to reach the sessions; of trotting from the bow to stern and back again to attend the sessions on the Queen Mary in '97. [I doubt I could today accomplish those physical feats.] And at teacher conferences and workshops, I promote the idea of science fiction and fantasy as a literature that speaks of man's relation to the universethat gives readers an understanding of our own world by association and internalization-that makes easier the teacher's task of prejudice reduction. Now I am no longer in the classroom. I am un-repentantly un-retired and un-salaried. I remain Professor Emerita of English at Montclair State University NJ and a life member of the Modern Language Association. I continue to support the National Council of Teachers of English and work for the New Jersey Council of Teachers of English. One of my roles for the latter is Student Awards Coordinator. This is why the NJCTE Annual Student Writing Contest has a special category for science fiction, and that's why the first place science fiction winners are honored by the New Jersey Governor's Awards in Arts Education. I am so appreciative that the 32 years of ''little things" I've done and my passion for SFRJ\ and the literature it promotes has brought me before you today to accept the Thomas D. Clareson Award for Distinguished Service. ( Oh, what joy! Thank you. PIONEER AWARD Introduction to Lisa Yaszek Pawel Frelik Everybody in this room probably knows by now that the 2005 Pioneer Award winner goes to Lisa Yaszek for her essay "The Women History Doesn't See: Recovering Iviidcentury Women's SF as a Literature of Social Critique," which was published in the Spring 2004 issue of Extrapolation. Now, a Pole presenting an award to another Pole, or at least someone bearing a Polish-sounding name, might look suspicious and border on nepotism. This time it is not the case as the decision was taken unanimously by the whole award committee, which this year also included Jan Bogs tad and Hal Hall. Needless to say, we arrived at our choice after a long deliberation. Like in previous years, practically all serious contenders came from journals rather tlIan themed volumes. We finally decided to choose Lisa's essay for two major reasons. The first was the originality of the subject the essay explores literary and cultural territories that have so far been largely unexplored. It's also worth noting that another of Lisa's essays was a runner-up for the Pioneer Award the year before. The other reason was the fact that the winning essay covers the material that is not readily available in every library and which, probably more often than not, is not a very gracious and easily interpretable read. We would also like to recognize the close runner-up: Samuel Collins, whose essay entitled "Scientifically Valid and Artistically True: Chad Oliver, Anthropology and "'\nthropological SF" published in the July 2004 issue of SFS was almost until the last moment very seriously considered for the award. ( 9) numerous awards (including the Brit ish Fantasy Award, World Fantasy Award. and being shortlisted for the Whitbread [Mother London]). he is most famous for having created a vast and fantastic multiverse of interconnected realities centered around the concept of a recurrent Eternal Champion. This collection endeavors to explore that multiverse on many levels and examine the many incarnations of the Eternal Champion. Moorcock. much like Edgar Rice Burroughs. Robert E. Howard. H. P. Lovecraft, and J. R. R. Tolkien. has created unique worlds and memorable characters that have become archetypal and influenced a generation of readers and writers. CONTACT: Thomas Fortenberry

C,--I_O __ WHAT: Storytelling:A Critical Jour nal of Popular Narrative TOPICS: The peer-reviewed, quar terly journal Storytelling is dedicated to analyses of popular narratives in the widest sense of the phrase and as evidenced in the media and all aspects of culture.Although past es says have focused on children's literature, comics, detective/crime fiction, film, horror/gothic, popular music, romance, science fiction, and television, submissions are by no means confined to these areas. SUBMISSIONS: SO-word abstract, 3,300 to 6,000 words, and follow MLA to: Elizabeth Foxwell, DEADLINE: none WHAT: Science and Literature Book WHO: Dr c.c. Barfoot and Dr Valeria Tinkler TOPICS: Even before the Renais sance provoked a new appetite for scientific investigation, such characters as wizards and alchemists stirred the imaginations of poets and romancers. However, from the begin ning of the seventeenth century on wards the notion of organized sci entific experimentation gath ered support and strength and this stimu lated sympathy as well as reaction amongst writers. Ever since that pe riod, science and literature have been regarded at different times as deadly rivals or as creative collaborators. This conference will attempt to deal with as many aspects of this rela tionship as possible from the Middle Ages to the present day. SUBMISSIONS: C. C. Barfoot DEADLINE: I October 2005 (al though later proposals may still be considered PIONEER AWARD Acceptance Speech Lisa Yaszek I want to begin by thanking Pawel for his incredibly kind introduction. Then I'd like to take a few minutes to tell you how I became interested in postwar women's science fiction and to thank everyone who has helped make my work on this topic possible. The essay for which I'm receiving this award, "The Women History Doesn't See: Recovering Midcentury Women's SF as a Literature of Social Cri tique," is part of a larger project that explores how the new technologies that emerged after World War II--including everything from atom bombs and com munication satellites to deep freezers and automatic coffee makers-radically transformed the relations of technoscience, society, and gender. I'm particularly interested in demonstrating how postwar women writers created the first body ofliterature to systematically assess these changing relations. By invoking some of rnidcentury America's most dearly-held beliefs about sex and gender in spe cific science fiction scenarios such as the nuclear war narrative and the media landscape story, these authors created a rich and vibrant tradition of women's science fiction that prefigured the literature we now know as feminist science fiction. I came to this project through my work at Georgia Tech, where I am both assistant professor in the School of Literature, Communication, and Cul ture and curator of the Bud Foote Science Fiction Collection. A.s a professor in LCC I teach postmodem literature, science fiction, and gender studies. As you might well imagine, at a technical institute where men outnumber women four to one, it's fairly easy to sell students on the value of postmodern literature and cdreme/y easy to sell them on the value of science fiction. Gender studies, how ever, is a much tougher sell. Now, to their credit, Georgia Tech students aren't hostile to the notion of gender studies, it's just that, as my first class told me, they didn't really get it-the ideas felt too abstract, and nothing else in their trammg at Tech had prepared them to talk about the history of gender and literature. So I thought about this for a while and thought, well, what if we approached gender studies through the lens of science fiction? And so off to the library I went. As I mentioned a moment earlier, we have an excellent science fiction collection at Georgia Tech. \V'hen my predecessor, Irving "Bud" Foote retued m 1999 after teaching science fiction for nearly thirty years, he donated over 8000 science fiction items to the institute, and the Bud Foote Science Fiction Collection was born. Since I took over the Collection in 2002, we've received 2000 more book donations from David Brin, Kathleen Ann Goonan Paul di l'ilippo, ;md a host of local Atlanta authors. We've also initiated a Fiction Lab, started an online science fiction dictionary, hosted a regional conference, and started a science fiction studies program in LCe. So surely, I thought, there should be more than enough material in the Collection for my purposes. iwd mdeed there was. I already had a good deal of feminist science fiction in my own collection. \v11at I was most interested in at that point was sCience fictIOn-feminist or not-written by women in the decades in1mediately followmg World War II. I was particularly interested in women's SF from this period in part because it marks the beginning of the technocultural era we live in t,oday, and in part because Georgia Tech first starting admitting women in 1951. So I thought It would be nice if I could find a few stories about gender and technoculture from this era.


( What I didn't realize was quite how many I would find! I expected to see names like Judith Merril, Carol Emshwiller, and Katherine MacLean, but who the heck were Anne Warren Griffith and Helen Reid Chase? And where did science columnists like June Lurie and Mildred Murdoch come from? When all was said and done, I'd found more than 250 new women writers who joined the SF community after World War II. And when I started reading them, I noticed something fascinating. In an era that was a real low point in feminist history-an era when women weren't supposed to be interested in science and technology, and when, literary critics assure us, they most definitely weren't writing fiction about science and technology-women tum out to have been doing just that. And they did it by boldly going where few women had gone before: into the science fiction community of the 194Os, 50s, and early 60s. Now, this is not to say that these women authors were necessarily challenging cold war gender ideology. But they were definitely invoking it in specific science fiction scenarios to critically assess the new scientific, social, and moral arrangements that defined cold war America as a whole. And then the Georgia Tech whistle blew and I realized I actually had to go teach. So I took some of those stories with me and I was both delighted and amazed by my students' enthusiastic response. This led me to think, well good ness, I should write about these stories for adults, too. And so far I have been both delighted and amazed by all your enthusiastic responses as well. And so, now it is time to thank a few of you specifically by name. First and foremost-always first and foremost-I want to thank my colleague and hus band Doug Davis. Doug is an excellent cold war and science fiction scholar in his own right. Furthermore, he is the only person I know who is genuinely interested in talking about unhappy housewife heroines and nuclear war before the first cup of coffee in the morning. Next, I want to thank Bud Foote for making this project possible. His generous gift to Georgia Tech has made science fiction history come alive for me, my colleagues, and my students. And at this point I want to thank my research assistants Jessica Dillard, Kate Sisson, and Amelia Shackleford, all of whom are aspiring science fiction scholars and authors as well as excellent representatives for the collection. Young women like Jessie, Kate, and Amelia are definitely our best hope for the future, and I believe that that the work we've done together in the Bud Foote Collection has taught them something about our shared literary and cultural past as well. As I noted earlier, my work on pos twar women's science fiction began as a teaching exercise and exploded into a professional research project. And so I want to thank two institutions that made this financially possible: the School of Literature, Communication, and Culture, which gave me a semester long paid leave to complete my research, and the National Endowment for the Humanities, which provided me with a summer stipend to write the first half of my manu script And of course, many, many kudos to Justine Larbalestier, Javier Martinez, and Farah Mendlesohn. None of them are here with us tonight, but they have all been instrumental in helping me develop my ideas about postwar women's SF and then preparing them for publication. And many more thanks to the Pioneer jury, Pawel Frelik,Jan Bogstad, and Hal Hall for further endorsing my ideas with this award. Finally, I want to thank all of you who are here tonight for helping me celebrate this moment. My colleagues at Tech have told me on more than one occasion that they envy the kind of community we have here in SFRA, and I have ( HAT:The Siayage Conference on the Whedonverse WHEN: May 26-28, 2006 WHERE: Gordon College, Barnesville, GA TOPICS: Rhonda Wilcox and David Lavery, coeditors of Fighting the Forces:What's at Stake in Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Siayage: The Online International Journal of Buffy Studies ( proposal for the second Siayage Conference:The Siayage Conference on the Whedonverse (SC2), sponsored by Gordon College and Middle Ten nessee State University. Roz Kaveney will deliver a keynote lecture. INFORMATION: For a lengthy but not exhaustive list of possible topics, see SUBMISSIONS: proposals to DEADLINE: October 31, 2005. WHAT:The Science Fiction/Fantasy Area WHO: Popular Culture Association WHEN: April 12-15,2006 WHERE: Atlanta, GA TOPICS: The Science Fiction and Fantasy (SF/F) Area of PCA solicits papers, paper proposals, and panel proposals from scholars interested in any aspect of SF/EAny disciplin ary method or approach is welcome! Studies on works from outside the United States are always welcome! Proposals on film, television, multi media and written works are solic ited.The SF/F Areas also solicits proposals on the follOWing specific themes: Battlestar Galactica: Science Fiction musicals: Philip K. Dick as cyberpunk author SUBMISSIONS: Dr. Caroline-Isabelle Caron Assistant Professor Department of History Queen's UniverSity Kingston, Ontario K7L 3N6 Canada DEADLINE: Nov. 15, 2005 )


__ WHAT:Arthurian Legend WHO:PCA WHEN: April 12-15, 2006 WHERE: Atlanta, GA TOPICS: Papers and panel propos als on all popular treatments of Arthurian Legend from any period and in any medium-print, visual, musical, commercial, electronicare welcome. SUBMISSIONS:

( I'd like to quote briefly from an article by M. Klein published in the March 1977 issue of Science Fiaion Studies, "Discontent in American Science Fiction," based upon his full-length study, Malaise dans 10 sciencejiaion. His observations on the state of American science fiction strike me as truly prescient, as relevant today as when they were first written: in many works of the best authors, the predominant feeling is that there is no future for science, for society, for the human race. This seems paradoxi cal in a literature which pretends to deal in anticipations. [D]isenchantment entered American SF [during the 1960s], increasing steadily until it reached the blackest pessimism, and uttering imprecations not only against society but against science itself, which had, in the end, failed. Even before 1970, we had arrived at the great triple malediction: pollution, overpopulation, dehumanization. M. Klein goes on to consider the works of Philip K Dick, Frank Herbert, and John Brunner as significant examples of this "malaise dans la science-fic tion": Using extremely different methods, much imitated since, they tell of the rise of monopolies, the disintegration of the individual, the dislocation of the social universe, the degradation and destruction of the physical world, the failure of humanity. These themes are as prevalent today as they were in the 1970s. Mesdames et monsieurs, mes arnis, c'est avec grand plaisir que je vous presente M. Gerard Klein. Ladies and gentlemen, friends, it's with great pleasure that I present this year's Pilgrim Award winner, a science fiction author, editor, and critic sans pareil, M. Gerard Klein. PILGRIM AWARD Acceptance Speech Gerard Klein Many thanks to all. I must thank everybody here tonight for the great honor you do me in giving me the Pilgrim Award for 2005. I am particularly proud to be the second Frenchman to receive this award, after my regretted friend Pierre Versins. When I received Dave Mead's kind letter, I was astounded, amazed, dumb founded, flabbergasted ... Well, in a word, I was surprised ... but you know how writers are: I had to show off and use many words where one was enough! It is true that, as a writer, I have published more than a dozen books, novels and short stories collections. As an editor, I have published hundreds of books. And as a critic, I have produced hundreds of papers (more than five hundred at the latest count), a great number of them being forewords and afterwords to the books I've published, often insisting on tlle relationships between those books and scientific topics. But very few of these works of mine have been translated into English in a form accessible even to the formidable erudite readers that you are. Many of them are available on tlle Web, but only in French. So I asked myself: what have I done to deserve such a distinction? Certainly, I have made some good friends among your ranks. This must have helped. But I feel I must also thank someone who died a long time ago, a century ago exactly, a man known as 'Jules Verne". I suppose you thought it would be appropriate to choose a Frenchman on such an occasion, and my name must have come out of tlle hat. By the way, I will try to correct a small error made by my friend George Slusser in a recent article published in Science Fiction Studies, the March 2005 issue. ( Larry Niven.Jerry Pournelle.Arthur C. Clarke. and Michael Flynn together with Heinlein. Heinlein Studies is not limited to sf themes only. SUBMISSIONS: Lisa N. Edmonds (see website) DEADLINE: Oct. 15. 2005 INFO: WHAT: Literature and Science WHO:ACA WHEN:Aprii 12-16.2006 WHERE: Atlanta. GA TOPICS: Interpretive papers focusing on the representation or integra tion of science in specific literary texts are especially encouraged. How ever. proposals dealing with any as pect of the interdisciplinary field of literature and science are welcome. Topics related to the interrelations of the humanities and sciences include: Institutionalization and inter/ disciplinarity of literature and science as a field of study.-Literature and science course philosophy. pedagogy. design. and texts-Use of literature (hard SF and other) to help teach science--Literary/rhetorical analyses of scientific texts-Origins and ef fects of such genre distinctions as "science fiction" and" popular sci ence" on literary interpretation and on attitudes toward canonicity and professional prestige--Differing be liefs about the meaning or signifi cance of evolution. free will. and lit eracy in the humanities and sciences-Literary realism and naturalism as a locus of humanistic and sci entific worldviews. SUBMISSIONS: Ian F. Roberts. Area Chair. Literature and Science. Missouri Western State U.4525 Downs Drive. St. Joseph MO 64507 DEADLINE: Nov. I. 2005 )


) WHAT: Literature, Epistemology and Science WHO: European Journal of English Studies, Vol. I I, Issue 3 (Routledge) TOPICS:The purpose of this special issue of EJES is to examine the rela tionship between literature (or art in general) and the realms of episte mology and science which philoso phers have tried to connect or to compare to literature in various ways since the beginning of aesthetics.The justification of literature has often gone hand in hand with an attempt to prove its cognitive content or its "truth"; more recently, many influential studies have en deavoured to show how literature and the arts have helped determine the course of scientific research and/ or epistemological theory. There is, of course, a long tradition of debate about this subject, with arguments ranging from T.L. Peacock's claim that while"the historian and the phi losopher are advancing in, and ac celerating, the progress of knowl edge, the poet is wallowing in the rubbish of departed ignorance" to the Wordsworth ian vision of poetry as "the breath and finer spirit of all knowledge". Related forms of the same question can be seen in the debate between I.A Richards and T.S. Eliot on the problem of belief, in the so-called "Two Cultures Contro versy" and even in the recent con troversy raised by Alan Sokal's hoax. The title of this special issue inten tionally places epistemology in the centre, since there may be some point in arguing that literature, fiction, and the arts in general playa full epistemological role without nec essarily contributing directly to the sciences themselves. SUBMISSIONS: Ronald Shusterman DEADLINE: 31 Dec. 2005 ( In reviewing the book "Pourquoi j'ai tue Jules Verne", by Bernard Blanc, he ascribed to me, with obvious puzzlement, some ideas and proposals I've never actually made. In fact, I have written practically nothing for this book, but Bernard Blanc used me, as well as some others, as characters for a story, a fiction, and put in our mouths some ideas that are not our own. So, George, I plead "not guilty" on this point. Nevertheless, I did write something for this book. A very short story, possibly the shortest fantasy story in the world. I will quote it for you: With the face you have, said the dying dragon to the knight, you should have killed the princess and married me. This is my only literary attempt in the field of fantasy. Let us get back a moment to Verne. More than twenty years ago, I published in the magazine Fiction, the French edition of The Maga:{jne 0/ Fantary and Science Fiction, a rather obvious observation. Jules Verne was most definitely fond of scientific marvels. But he chose to destroy them systematically at the end of each of his books that contained such marvels. For instance, the submarine Nautilus is even destroyed twice. It disappears once in the Maelstrom, and then it is utterly destroyed at the end of The Mysterious Island. You can pick any marvel, it is destroyed. This is also interesting because it resorts to the same construction as in modem fantasy, at least as John Clute sees it, in which the technological marvel is a kind of sickness, and only by destroying it can you make the world whole and sound again. Now, believe it or not, I have read dozens of papers and books about the works of Jules Verne and never, never have I found even an allusion to this systematic destruction of his scientific marvels. Why is Verne so obsessed with this destruction, and why did almost no one sec, apparently, tile obvious? The remark able thing is that Verne is practically the only writer to have proceeded in this way. Almost all other writers of the same period allowed the scientific marvels to live their lives. As to Verne, I have outlined the beginning of an answer. He was fascinated by modernity while at the same time he was afraid, even terrified by the idea that this very modernity would deeply modify his world. Besides, each scientific marvel he invented or described implies a monopo listic concept. Nemo has a monopolistic control of the oceans, Robur of the air, and so on. This is contrary to the liberal and "bourgeois" view of the political and economical world Verne was attached to. This is the reason why I consider Jules Verne as a kind of Moses of modern science fiction. He has seen the Promised Land, but has never set foot in it. He cannot accept the changes, the transformation that Science and Technology must inevitably bring to society. In my view, the real inventors of modem science fiction are men like Wells and Rosny Alne, who recognized, and even called for such transformations. But as to the second question: why did all those writers whose commentaries on Verne I have read overlook this aspect of the destruction of the scientific marvel? ... I have no definite answer. Perhaps you will give me one, or several. I'd like to add something about how science and technology are related to science fiction. In my view, this relationship is never direct, inlmediate, automatic. I t's always mediated by pictures and representations originating in Science and strongly remodeled by science popularization, what we call in French "vulgarisation". Tbis mediation seems to me very important, and is generally overlooked by science fiction analysts. I tried to make this point clear in a short paper published in )


Leantingjrom other worlds, a collection of essays dedicated to my friend Darko Suvin. I was probably not clear enough since a guy who published a review of this book in SFSwas rather critical of my little paper. I'm sorry, I forgot his name ... and have not found the relevant issue of SFS before coming here. He may be here with us tonight ... If so, I hope we will have a friendly chat about all this. The other point I wanted to clarify is the consanguinity but radical differ ence between science fiction and pseudologies such as flying saucers, prehistoric astronauts and so on. Science fiction is fiction, a suspension of disbelief for a period of time only; pseudologies are trying to make themselves believable for all times, against all odds. I ought to say something about science fiction in France, I suppose, but I feel it would be too long a story. I prefer to answer your questions, if you have any. However, science fiction goes way, way back in France, and is older even than Verne's works. But it fell into decline between the two World Wars and reappeared only in the early 50's, reintroduced along with jazz and other novelties when we were liberated by the Allied troops. I began to read science fiction, and especially American and English SF -but also all the old French SF when I was ten; I became what is known as a "distinguished writer" when I reached twenty, and a successful publisher just a bit after turning thirty. By the way, I learnt English by myself, essentially to be able to read science fiction in the original text. You can hear for yourself what a terrible mess I made of THAT But my real occupation was elsewhere. For many years, I have worked as an economist. It helped me survive in the difficult field of publishing. But not as a writer, because it is too time consuming. The field of science fiction publishing is particularly difficult at the present time because of the competition between commercial fantasy and good science fiction. Young people read fantasy, but they don't move on to science fiction afterwards, because they think it's too "difficult". So our readership is gradually growing older. Well, you know all that, and that is life ... Another problem is the absence of reciprocity between the markets: almost ninety percent of science fiction and fantasy published in France is translated from the English language, from American or British writers mostly. Almost no texts written in French are translated into English. This is just an observation. I have no illusion about the possibility of changing this state of things, except marginally, perhaps. But if you have any idea .. .? All in all, that's what led me here [today/tonight]. And lowe it all to you. So, again, many thanks. And I am waiting for your questions. I will try to answer them with the help of Arthur B. Evans, or any other available French speaking entity, if he, she, or it, agrees to do that. .. MARY KAY BRAY AWARD Incroduecjon CO Bruee A. BeaCje Margaret McBride What do we expect in a review of a non-fiction book? The review should summarize the book's main arguments and give some sense of the work's strengths and weaknesses. What elevates a book review beyond these normal expectations? -a review with style, pizazz, a review that discusses the work in a larger context? The winner of this year's Mary Kay Bray Award does all these things ( ( IS) WHAT: Science and Religion in Film WHO: (InterCulture E-Journal III 01105) TOPICS: For our Fall 2005 Issue, InterCulture is seeking essays that address the engagement of science and religion in film. 21 st century culture is still dealing with the consequences of the Enlightenment project on multiple levels. One of these consequences is the conflict between science and religion. More recently, the "warfare" model has given way to newer perspectives that recognize alternating currents of influence between these disci plines; these latest perspectives attempt to define the engagement of science and religion, often describ ing a symbiotic relationship of growth and development. InterCulture wants to explore the matrices where these two cosmologies harmonize (as well as conflict) and what the impact of the emerging discourses mean to the modern public. Why? Because the engagement of science and religion surfaces as a central theme in many modern films, thus playing a cen tral role in defining mass culture in the 20th and 21 st centuries. SUBMISSIONS: Thomas Philbeck WHAT: Science Fiction and Fantasy Area WHO: SWITX PCNACA WHEN: Feb 8-1 I. 2006 WHERE: Albuquerque. NM TOPICS:TheArea Chairs of the Sci ence Fiction and Fantasy Area would like to invite paper and panel proposals on any aspect of science fiction and fantasy. SUBMISSIONS: proposals to DEADLINE: November 15.2005. INFO:www.h-net.orgl )


) WHAT: Whedonverse WHO:SWrrx PCNACA (11/15/05; 218-11/06) WHEN: Feb 8-11,2006 Albuquerque, NM TOPICS:The Area Chairs of the Sci ence Fiction and Fantasy Area would like to invite paper and panel proposals on the special topic of Joss Whedon's work, including Buffy:TVS, Angel, and Firefly. SUBMISSIONS: proposals to DEADLINE: November 15, 2005 WHAT:The Mythology in Contemporary Culture panel WHO: Popular Culture Association WHEN: April 12-16, 2006 WH ERE: Atlanta, Georgia TOPICS:The Mythology in Contemporary Culture panel is dedicated to exploring mythological figures and themes in all areas of popular culture and the significance of these mythological images and motifs in contemporary postmodern culture. Topics of particular interest include, but are not limited to:Technology and mythology; myths of destruction, es pecially as they pertain to the tsu nami, London bombings and the war in Iraq; Myths of otherness (some possible areas of exploration include but are not limited to the new Fall television line up of "invaders among us" sci-fi thrillers; blockbuster mov ies such as War of the Worlds,Alien, etc.; the political debates surrounding gay marriage, etc.) All abstracts pertaining to the general theme of mythology in contemporary culture are welcome. SUBMISSIONS: Anais Spitzer DEADLlNt: November I, 2005 INFORMATiON: ( exceptionally well. His review begins by telling us of other biographical and critical works on Frank Baum, including the reviewer's own on-line search that revealed Lewis Carroll and Wonderland to be six times more popular as an academic subject than the Wonderful Land of Oz. A Google search, however, showed "Oz" with two times as many hits as in Wonderland" and even slighdy more sites than "Middle Earth" suggesting the great popular appeal of Baum's fiction. The review also gives us some background on the expertise of the author, Katherine Rogers, as a biographer. This review makes few generalizations-giving us specific page count on how much space the book devotes to various time frames of Baum's life. We learn that this work focuses much more on the contribution of Frank's wife and feminist activist mother-in-law to his writing than other works have--suggesting a feminist slant to the critique. We are told of the book's original and insightful arguments-for example, a unique section contains information about the 1930's Judy Garland film. Ms. Rogers speculates on how Baum might have felt about the film. Such information is not found in other biographies but the reviewer argues it is relevant to understanding Baum's contribution to speculative works. The review mentions other fictional revisioning of Baum's works like the wonderful Was by Geoff Ryman. The reviewer also lets us know that some of the critical analyses, while fascinating, may sometimes be to the slight detriment of the book as a biography. Simply reading the review will tell most of us something about Frank Baum that we didn't know. However, for two of us on the committee, the review achieved the highest purpose of a review-we subsequently read the book for ourselves! The Mary Kay Bray Award for 2004 goes to the review article of L. Frank Baum, Creator ofOz by Katharine M. Rogers-in SFRA Rliz,z"ew #268, April/May 2004. The author of the review was Bruce A. Beatie. Ed. Bruce A. Beatie was not in attendance. GRADUATE STUDENT PAPER AWARD Acceptance Speech Melissa Colleen Stevenson Thank you. I would like to express both my deep gratitude and delight at being honored with the graduate student paper award tonight. Discovering the Science Fiction Research Association and this conference three years ago marked a turning point in my career as a student of science fiction. Being able to surround myself with so many incredible critics and theorists of science fiction and fantasy, not to mention the opportunity to interact with many of the great writers in the field, has been a revelation. I have been particularly fortunate to find here, not only well established critics who have been generous with their guidance, but also a peer group of young scholars who continue to share with me the challenges and joys of starting out in the field. I am pleased to say that many of those I met at my first conference are here today. They have become my friends, colleagues, and fellow travelers. This is my final year as a graduate student at this conference, but I hope that this occasion marks not an end, but merely the beginning of a new chapter in my relationship with SFRA. The encouragement and support I have found here has been formative and I hope that as an organization we will continue to reach out to graduate students and other young scholars as they enter the field. )


And so, again, I thank you, not only for this award tonight, but also for offering the kind of critical community that is both so incredibly rare and so invaluable. NONFICTION REVIEW 'Alias' Assumed Karen Hellekson Kevin Weisman with Glenn Yeffeth, ed., "Alias" Assumed: Sex, lies, and SD-6. Dallas, TX: BenBella Books, 2005. Spiral-bound softcover, 234p, 1-93210046-6. [BenBella Books, 6440 N Central Expressway, Suite 617, Dallas, TX 75206; The television program Alias (ABC, 2001-present), unlike Star Trek and Btiffj the Vatnpire Slqyer, hasn't entered the domain of academic discourse or garnered the attention either of these other cult shows has, and this book does not remedy that lack. The program, a frothy blend of sex appeal, outrageous outfits, and convoluted plots, follows Sydney Bristow (played by Jennifer Gar ner) and her exploits in covert ops, first with rogue agency SO-6 as a double agent, then with the CIA. Complex plots weave around her relationship with her father, Jack, also a CIA agent; her mother, Irina, a Russian spy; her love interest, Vaughn; her boss/ ex-boss/boss, Sloane; and Milo Rimbaldi, a long-dead fifteenth-cen tury artist-seer whose before-their-time artifacts push many of the plots furward. Twenty-one short essays comprise the book, all with short, catchy titles along the lines of 'Torturers Wanted" (by Sally D. Stabb-yes, that's her real name), "They Scanned Our Brain Waves From Orbit. .. (by Roxanne Longstreet Conrad), and "Why Sydney Has No Social Life" (by Jody Lynn Nye). Even a cursory flip through the book reveals that this text's purpose is not heavyweight analysis. Few bibliography sections grace the essays. The contributors run the gamut from fiction writers to journalists to psychology professors, and although the essays are not scholarly-that is not the purpose of this book-they are smart and accessible, and I appreciate their breezy, informal style. They also rely on a comprehensive knowledge of individual Alias episodes and mention other TV programs, most frequently The X-Files and Btiffj, in comparison. The informed reader will get the most from this book. Various aspects of Alias are treated. Fiction writer Tracy S. Morris, in "Geek Chic," a personal essay, explains her fascination with the character of Marshall J. Flinkman and links it to the point of the program itself: "the quest for the ultimate geek" (81). Physicist and journalist David Harris, in "The Science of Alias," analyzes the plausibility of the cutting-edge (some would say science fictional) technology seen on the program in terms of plausibility and realism. Technical writer Mary Lavoie engages in more serious analysis in "Alias Alice," which compares and contrasts Through the Looking Glass with Alias in terms of knowledge, discovery, and agency. Professor Lee Fratantuono, in "Classical Mythology, Prime-Time Television," analyzes AIi'ar's archetypes, concluding that the ancient pattern of a woman's preordained destiny is Sydney's fate as well. Stabb (a professor), in "Torturers Wanted," links military and intelligence communities to I)ults, emphasizing how the organization, whether good or bad, 1l1culcates and trains its members. Kevin Weisman (better known as the guy who plays Marshall J. Flinkman), in his introduction, doesn't explain the rationale the as much as engagingly explain his role in the show and note that the 1l1terest lies not in the "espionage, stunts and sexiness" but in the relationships (2). Still, avid fans ( ( 17) WHAT: Religion and SF/F WHO:SouthwestfTexas PC/ACA WHEN: Feb. 8-1 I. 2006 WHERE: The Hyatt Regency Conference Hotel.Albuquerque. NM TOPICS:TheArea Chairs of Religion and of Science Fiction and Fantasy would like to invite paper and panel proposals for a joint session on reli gion and science fiction and fantasy in literature. film. and television. SUBMISSIONS: queries. 250 word paper proposals. and 500 word panel proposals to Ximena Gallardo c.: OR Wesley Bergen: DEADLINE: Nov 15. 2005 INFO: http://www.h-net.orgl-swpcal WHAT: Special Topics: Farscape. Star Trek. LotR WHO: SWITX PCAJACA WHEN: Feb 8-11. 2006 WHERE: The Hyatt Regency Conference Hotel.Albuquerque. NM. TOPICS:The Area Chairs of the Sci ence Fiction and Fantasy Area would like to invite paper and panel pro posals for several special sessions on any aspect of the television shows Farscape and Star Trek and the film Lord of the Rings. SUBMISSIONS: to: C. Jason Smith DEADLINE: Nov 15. 2005 INFO: http://www.h-net.orgl-swpcal )


(18 ) ( SF journals to a good home. Due to retirement and relocation, I need to downsize my research li brary.Therefore, I want to give away the SF journals I've accrued since the late I 970s: Extrapolation, SdenceFiction Studies, Locus, and the SFRA Newsletter/Review. I also have the New York Review of SF from about 1989 as well as issues of now defunct sf magazines SF Eye and Delap's Review of SF. All runs are nearly complete. Preference will be given to a per son or library that will take the whole collection but no response will be ignored. I would prefer that the re cipient pay all or part of the post age, but I won't insist on it. This is a great opportunity to enhance per sonal or campus research holdings in SF.The collection will delight those who still believe that the interpre tation of scholarly work is enhanced by having access to the actual paper journals in which articles/re views appeared. Please contact me by email or phone (573-341-2959), or mail (Dr. Elizabeth Cummins; Department of English and Technical Communica tion; University of Missouri-Rolla; Rolla. MO 65409-0560). of the show will enjoy his insights, particularly his on-set stories, and his headnotes to each essay display some thoughtful analysis just as often as they crack wise. Overall, the book is fluffy, but it's fun fluff, accessible fluff, fluff that makes you think. This book is part of the Smart Pop series, which includes titles on The Matrix as well as TV shows Buffy, Ange4 NYPD Blue, and Firef!y. Judging by the amount of serious critical work that has been done on these titles, the publica tion of "AJias" Assumed may be a bellwether for an upwelling of critical interest in Alias, a smart, complex show that, despite all its appeal, may be in its last season as a result of declining ratings I consider this-text, which lacks deep analysis but which does a wonderful job oflaying out the basics, merely a pointer toward more work that remains to be done. NONFICTION REVIEW Projec ons Mark Decker Anders, Lou (ed.) Projections: Science Fiction in Literature and Film. Austin: Monkeybrain Books, 2004.329 pages. Paperbound, $15.95. ISBN 1932265120. Anthologies of criticism--1lcademic or otherwise-present a special dif ficulty to a reviewer. Since such works are, by definition, a collection of self contained parts, it is difficult to give attention to all of the contributions in the space of a short review. That difficulty is compounded when the anthology itself does not take its own announced boundaries seriously. Does areviewer ignore strong contributions simply because he can't understand how they relate to the anthology as a whole? Since even critical reviews should help books find their audience, should it matter that a collection featuring several strong articles doesn't really function as a coherent whole if that collection would nevertheless find readers? Projections: Science Fiction in Literature and Film presents such challenges. Editor Lou Anders has assembled a very readable book, but this should not surprise anyone who glances through the contributor biographies in the back. Nebula and Hugo winners like Robert Silverberg and David Brin abound, and every single essayist has published novel-length fiction. Yet while there is much readerly pleasure here, there is little global coherence, despite Anders' annoying decision to number all the footnotes in the text consecutively. The vaguely aca demic-sounding title advertises essays on science fiction as it appears on screen and on the page and strongly implies a good deal of attention to the relation between science fiction film and science fiction literature. And there are several essays-both outstanding and problematic-that fit somewhere within the scope implied by the title. The collection's strength can be found in essays that bring controlled analysis and clear writing together to a degree rarely seen in literary or film criticism. The best of these is Adam Roberts' "The Matrix Trilogy," which presents a neatly turned and eminently readable application of Deleuze and Guattari to the Wachowski brother's trilogy. Other examples of complex but readable criticism include Howard V Hendrix' "The Thing of Shapes to Come: Science Fiction as Anatomy of the Future," and "The Body Apocalyptic: Theol ogy and Technology in Films and Fictions of the MIME Era," and Catherine Asaro's "Strange Loops of Wonder." The weaker essays, though entertaining reads, suffer from a tendency either to present a catalog of film and fiction titles without giving much analysis, )


( as does James E. Gunn's "The Tinsel Screen:' or to make provocative yet unsupported assertions. An example of the second vice can be found in Brin's "Achilles, Superman, and Darth Vader, Or Why Star Wars Has It in for Our Rebel Civiliza tion." In this essay Brin asserts that "plenty of evidence shows that George Lucas hates a civilization that's been very good to him" (35) and then fails to provide any of that evidence. This kind of hyperbole is often found in articles written for online magazines like Salon. com, where this piece was initially published, but it seems oddly petulant when appearing in a print anthology with a pretentious title. This tone is especially unfortunate since Brin does much to advance his thesis that there are cryptofacist overtones in the Star Wars films. There are also several very short pieces that fit within the thematic bounds that the title lays out, but do not reach the level of rigor or depth of treatment usually seen in anthologies of serious criticism. For example, Lucius Shepard's "eXcrelvIENt" is a review of the film X-Men, not a critical essay. In other words, it's the type of writing about film designed to help someone decide whether or not to go and see a particular film, and it is therefore difficult to understand why it would be anthologized outside of a casebook of criticism focusing on X-Men. Proof of this comes in Shepard's conclusion, which compares X-Men to other commodities. Employing a pizza metaphor, Shepard tells his readers that the "film is not a top of-the-line pie" neither "the slimy cardboard with orange sauce" sold by street vendors, so if they "need a nosh, hey, go for it" (245). One could make much of the discrepancy between the title and the review's conclusion-who noshes on excrement, after all?-but the real issue here is deciphering why such an explicitly ephemeral exercise merits preservation. Many of the essays, however good or bad, fall outside the boundaries that the anthology's title announces. Indeed, the most amusing essay in this collection is John Grant's "Gulliver Unravels: Generic Fantasy and the Loss of Subversion." Here, Grant bemoans the impact of "Dragonspume Chronicles of the Sorcerer Kingdom Ancients, or whatever bloated trilogy the publisher's presses choose next to excrete into the toilet bowl of the book trade" (181) on a genre he sees as essentially subversive. Yet that genre is Fantasy, not Science Fiction, and Grant's analysis does not breathe a word about film. Furthermore, as the quote above suggests, the essay spends a great deal of time dealing with how fiction is manu factured and marketed. Yet the term "literature" in the anthology's title at least implies that the works of written and filmic Science Fiction will be treated as objects of art that have profound social and cultural meaning, not as products that need to be matched with the right consumers. These market-based concerns recur frequently, however, and since all of the contributors to this anthology are working fiction writers, there is an insider quality to much of the discussion that may limit the appeal of the arguments being made. For example, in the essay "In Defense of Science Fiction," John Clute speculates about the way the covers for Science Fiction novels are designed, wondering why "knowledge about the difference between a book and its cover" is not applied to the way Science Fiction is marketed. Clute asserts that writers in other popular genres, such as mystery writer P.D. James and spy novelist John Le Carre, see their works "slide 'upmarket' with some ease; and, without losing the allure of their genre underpinning, appeal to an audience that does not believe it dabbles in kids' stuff" (26) because of the way their novels are packaged. I do not wish to take issue with the substance of Clute's argument. But such mundane and invidious com parisons don't really help critics understand the cultural importance of Science Fiction. Yet despite the inevitable weak essays and lack of focus, this collection does ( Directory Additions and Corrections: Additions: Carlen Lavigne 305-266 Lorry Greenberg Drive Ottawa, ONT KIT 3J9 CANADA Geetha Bakilapadavu Languages Group Birla Institute of Technology and Science Pilani, Rajastha 333031 INDIA Grace Dillon 18241 SW Willamina Creek Road Willamina, OR 97396 Jason W Ellis 919 Rockbridge Way Norcross, GA 30093 Jason Haslam Department of English Dalhousie University Halifax, Nova Scotia B3H 4P9 CANADA John Heasley Richmond Center High School 23200 Hornet High Road Richland Center, WI 53581 cont'd ... )


C,--2_0 __ Miriam Jones Department of Humanities and Languages University of New Brunswick, Saint John P.O. Box 5050 Saint John, New Brunswick E2l 415 CANADA Jeffrey Redmond 1335 Beech Wood NE Grand Rapids, MI 49505-3830 James Warner 3153 NW 25th St. Oklahoma City, OK 73107 Linda Wight 9/25-29 Stagpole St. West End QlD 4810 AUSTRALIA Liverpool John Moores University Aldam Robarts learn Resource Centre Mount Pleasant Liverpool L3 5UZ ENGLAND Corrections: lyman Tower Sargent Stout Research Centre Victoria University of Wellington P.O. Box 600 Wellington 6015 NEW ZEALAND Brent Stypczynski 1235 East Main St. apt. 4 Kent,OH 44240 contd .... ( have an audience, albeit a small one. Because of the anthology's overall readability and breadth of subject matter, this would make a good addition to the hardcore fan's library. Furthermore, the accessibility of the strong readings of literary or filmic Science Fiction would make it of interest for teachers looking for supple mentary material for undergraduate courses. Projections, however, will not do much for scholars engaged in serious research. NONFICTION REVIEW Encyclopedia of! Science Fiction Michael M. levy D'Ammassa, Don. Enrycfopedia of Sdence Fiction. New York: Facts on File, 2005.538 p. $65.00. ISBN 0-8160-5924-1. The first thing one notices about this new reference book, part of the Facts on File Library of World Literature, is that it lists an author rather than an editor. Most major reference works, consider the Clute/Nicholls Enrycfopedia of Sdence Fiction or Neil Barron's Anatomy of Wonder, are edited by a major figure in the field, but with most of the entries produced by a wide range of scholars. The idea that one person might actually write an entire encyclopedia calls to mind visions of Dr. Johnson toiling away in the distant past. If one person in our field is capable of handling such a task, however, it may well be Don D' Anunassa. One of the most prolific book reviewers in the history of science fiction, he is best known for his work in Sdence Fiction Chronicle. A successful novelist and short story writer, he is also a four time nominee for the Hugo Award for best fan writer. D' Anunassa is a near-legendary figure in science-fiction fandom and undoubtedly one of the best-read authorities in the genre. Tbe advantages of having one enormously knowledgeable person do all the entries in an encyclopedia should be obvious. D'Anunassa brings to this project a unified vision of the field. He knows what he likes and, while one might not agree with him all of the time, he's consistent in his preferences and does his best to be objective. When he assesses a writer's or a work's importance in the field, you can be reasonably certain that his opinion will be both intelligent and in line with opinions expressed in other entries. The book does have some problems, though. As encyclopedias go, a per haps inevitable effect of its only having one writer, this is a very stripped down volume indeed. Much smaller than Clute/Nicholls, its coverage is significantly less complete. D'Ammassa includes entries for far fewer authors than are found in Clute/Nicholls and leaves out a number of significant people (among them A. Merritt, Eleanor Amason, and M. John Harrison to mention three very different examples). He includes no entries for key concepts in the field, movements, maga zines, publishers, non-printed media or any of the categories that make Clute/ Nicholls so valuable. There's very little on pre-twentieth century literature. What D' Ammassa does include, however, are numerous entries for individual works of science fiction. His entries for novels are generally excellent. To take two specific examples, D'i\mmassa deals intelligently with both Jack Williamson's 1949 The Humanoids and Dan Simmons's much more recent Hyperion series. Both classics are summarized in a graceful fashion, with their key themes clearly outlined. More problematic, however, are some of his short story choices. Of course he does include most of the award winners and genre touchstones, stories like Heinlein's "All You Zombies" and Bradbury's "The Golden Apples of the Sun," but I was surprised by how many genuinely minor pieces were given entries. Do we really need a half-page on Asimov's ''All the Troubles in the World" or Anvil's "Bill for )


( Delivery ... a story even D'Ammassa admits is "generally forgotten"? In general, D' Ammassa's choices, and some of his evaluations, also seem a bit dated. In his Introduction he discusses the "immense popularity of science fiction in preference to fantasy, particularly in the United States." This may have been true twenty years ago, but is hardly borne out by contemporary publication statistics. He also references Jack Vance and Ray Bradbury as examples of genre writers who ''have now gained respect outside the field," a statement which seems similarly applicable to the 1980's. One wonders why he didn't reference Le Guin, or Neal Stephenson, or William Gibson. Further, many of the best current science fiction writers are given relatively small entries or are entirely absent. It's difficult to understand why enjoyable, but minor SF writers like Roger MacBride Allen and Charles Eric Maine should receive nearly two pages of text, while far more important authors like lain M. Banks, David Brin, and Octavia Buder receive significandy less space, and major (relatively) new figures in the field such as Ken MacLeod and China Mieville aren't represented at all. One almost won ders if this volume might not have actually been written a number of years ago and then had its publication delayed significandy. At the end of his alphabetical listing, D'Ammassa includes a number of useful appendices. There's a Glossary of key science fiction terms; a listing of the Nebula and Hugo Award winners for fiction through 2003; a bibliography of major works of science fiction which runs through 2004 but which ignores sig nificant fiction by authors who haven't received an entry in the main alphabetized listing; a Selected Bibliography of Secondary Sources and an Index. The Selected Bibliography is quite short and omits a number of important and recent books in the field, including Edward James's magisterial Science Fiction in the Twentieth Century, Neil Barron's widely-respected Anatomy of Wonder, and Brian Stableford's recent Historical Dictionary of Science Fiction literature. Ultimately, D'Ammassa's Enryclopedia of Science Fiction comes off a poor second when compared to the Clute/Nicholls Enryclopedia of Science Fiction, but it's not without its value. D' Ammassa's opinions are always intelligent and worth while. Ifhis book is less complete or erudite than Clute/Nicholls, it is often more readable, not to mention somewhat more up to date and significandy easier to hold. To my mind Clute/Nicholls and Anatomy of Wonderin its recent 5th edition remain the field's most important reference sources, but D'Ammassa's book (along with Stableford's) has earned the right to a spot on library reference shelves. NONFICTION REVIEW Inside the World 0' PhliUp Pullman Amelia A. Rutledge Tucker, Nicholas. Inside the Womi of Phibp Pullman: Darkness Visible. New York: ibooks, 2003. Paperbound. $12.95.ISBN 0-7434-9819-4. The sub tide of Nicholas Tucker's study, Inside the WorM of Philip Pullman: Darkness Visible, taken from Book I of Paradise Lost, does not evoke either the plot or the engaging lucidity of Pullman's work: ... [Satan] views/ A Dungeon horrible, on all sides round/As one great Furnace flam'd, yet from those flames/ No light, but rather darkness visible" (I, 60-63). Tucker is aware of the historical and literary contexts of Pullman's work, but he tends to indicate these contexts without necessarily elucidating their significance with any thoroughness. The re viewers' ''blurbs'' for the volume focus on the compactness or handiness of this short book, and therein lies the need to read with caution. ( Veronica Hollinger Cultural Studies Program Trent UniverSity Peterborough Ontario K9J 7B8 Canada Phone: 705/748-10 II, ext. 1809 New Email: Melissa Colleen Stevenson )


) Tucker begins with a biographical section, liberally illustrated with photographs of Pullman from childhood to adulthood. The connections he makes between Pullman's early loss of his biological father, separation from his mother while she worked in London (a separation deeply felt despite the loving nurture by his grandparent), and other disruptions, verge on the facile at times, even though Pullman has alluded to some of these influences. The complexities of lifeand-art connections are matters for more nuanced exploration. The most useful sections of Tucker's work are his surveys of Pullman's varied literary output, especially the earlier novels, including Galatea, a work for adults. Although readers of Pullman may know of his interest in graphic novels from Spring-Heeled Jack (1989), they might not know that the 1991 edition of Count KarLrten was lavishly illustrated and practically a graphic novel in its own right; the sample illustration from that edition will probably encourage readers to seek it out. At the same time, Tucker fails to note Pullman's rescripting of Weber's opera Der Freischiitz (even to the name Zamiel for the demon); providing this kind of useful intertextual detail is part of the function of author studies, but it is absent here. Tucker devotes half of the book to a discussion of His Dark Materials, providing readings of the three novels The Golden Compass (Northern lights in the UK), The Subtle Knife, and The Amber Spyglass (1996-2000), and very brief discussions of the influence of Milton, Blake, and Heinrich von Kleist; for the latter, the book provides a translation of "On the Marionette Theatre," an essay whose influence, along with Keats's "negative capability" (which Tucker does not mention), Pullman has more than once acknowledged. Again, the discussion combines astute readings (l was especially grateful for the reference to Winnicott's concept of the "internal caretaker" in the context of the daemons), with a tendency not always to distinguish between a character's assertion and one that can reasonably be attributed to the implied author. For example, Tucker suggests that the Spectres may be a reference to humans' dangerous curiosity; this is the opinion of one philosopher, but to grant it much currency without noting the more complex explanations that connect the Spectres to William Blake's concept is a disservice to the author and to the texts. Even more tenuous is the assertion that the Spectres represent the danger of dwelling in fantasy, with a suggested parallel to I Never Promised You a Rose Garden (172); the clinical state of Will's mother, even if he wonders if it is linked to Spectres, does not suggest so facile an explanation. Tucker's bibliography lists the fine essay by Anne Marie Bird in Children's literature in Education; one wishes that more of her insight had been used in the discussion of Pullman's soul-draining creatures. Some parts of the discussion of HDM seem to have been written without checking textual details: Tucker asserts that Lyra follows Asriel and Roger into another world (97) Roger dies in his own world. Later, he describes the work of the physicist Mary Malone as "bring[ing] up on a computer screen some elementary particles" (98) when what has occurred is communication by means of manipulated pixels. Tucker's admiration for Pullman's work leads him to contrast the optimism of Pullman's work with the generally bleaker viewpoint taken, in his view, by mimetic fiction for young adults. Since he does not provide titles, his comments remain at the level of assertions and must be taken with the same caution required by his statement that "although Pullman chooses a fantasy setting, ... his characters still basically achieve their ends through hard work" (27), a statement readily countered by numerous serious works of fantasy for children and young adults. ( For an experienced reader of Pullman's work, Tucker's book may be a handy quick reference for bibliography and brief comments about Pullman's lesser-known works. On the other hand, Tucker's brisk, assured style can mislead readers seeking a "key" to Pullman's work, so the book is a dubious choice for general or academic libraries. NONFICTION REVIEW Mark Decker Squire, Susan Merrill.liminallit'Cs: Imagining the Human at the Frontiers of Biomedicine. Duke University Press, 2004. 350 pages (mdex). Paperback, $23.95. ISBN 0-8223-3366-X. Generally, academics at least pay lip service to the need for more interdisciplinary investigations. When confronted with scholarly hybrids, however, most find themselves picking and choosing, skimming and slowing down in direct proportion to the materials' relevance to their own specialized training. Typical readers of SFRAR would approach Susan Merrill Squire's liminal Lim: Imagining the Human at the Frontiers of Biomedicine in this way; becoming engaged when she discusses SF and feeling )


( more or less detached when she discusses bioethics, issues in biotechnology, or methodological concerns within the field of science studies. This does not mean that Squire, Brill Professor of Women's Studies and English at The Pennsylvania State University, has not written an interesting book, and does not mean that serious students of SF will not benefit from her discussion of biotechnology and the genre. Instead, itis fair warning that the interests of readers of tllis review may not square exactly with Squire's, and her book should be approached accordingly. Before I begin this review, however, I should disclose that I know Professor Squire slightly. I was a graduate student at Penn State when she wrote this book, but my interactions with her were limited to no more than a handful of brief conversations at reading groups. Scholars of SF will certainly be comfortable with Squire's core thesis. Squire posits that there is a "biomedical imagi nary," a transdisciplinary creative space where both fictions about biomedicine and biomedical technologies themselves are generated Consequently, any serious attempt to discus bioethics needs to include fictive treatments of biotechnology because such tales generate "biocultural meanings from new technologies" (16). Yet Squire is deliberately hazy about the exact mecha nism of the biomedical imaginary, and this may disappoint some readers. According to Liminal Lit"eS, "the trans formative processes of biomedicine are enabled somehow by the transformative narrative that is science fiction" (19, italics author's). While Squire's "somehow" is intellectually honest, it captures the argumentative lacuna in her book: rarely does she attempt to document direct influence on or communication between the artistic and scientific realms of the biomedical imaginary. Instead, Squire places fictive and technical discussions of sinliIar issues-aging, reproductive technology, transplantation, etc-side by side and then posits that the resemblance demonstrates the flow of ideas that penetrate the artificial disciplinary boundaries between fiction and science .. And while this juxtaposition may not be fully convincing, it does allow Squire's extradisciplinary readers to view fanliliar texts in new ways. To illustrate Squire's method, we'll take a look at Chapter 4, "Giant Babies: Graphing Growth in the Early Twentieth Century." Squire reads two SF novels that deal with scientifically engineered growth in the context of the increasing influence of statistical representation of growth on early twentieth century scientists like Harvard Medical School's Charles Sedgewick .Minot and British medical researcher Hastings Gilford. This allows liminal Lim to see H.G. Wells' novel The Food 0/ the Gods as anticipating rviinot's statistical theorization of a population-hased growth rate (126) while reading Pllilip Wylie's Ghdiatoras waming of what would happen if abnormal growth or other physical attributes were restricted to an individual and not a broad segment of the population (130). Squire also examines several texts from Ama:;jng Stories, including Charles H. Rector's "Crystals of Growth" (1927), Earl Repp's "The Gland Superman" (1938), Ross Rocklynne's "Big Man" (1941), and Frank Patton's ''The Test Tube Girl" (1942). Squire finds that all of these tales "focus on the way that rate of growth is determined by the earliest stages of life; an awareness of the linkages between the macroand nlicroprocesses of growth; and an apprecia tion of the differential growth rates not only characteristic of different species but present within each species" (135). Since all of these issues were of deep concern to scientists working on questions of growth and aging, then, both groups-writers and researchers-were tending the same comer of the biomedical imaginary that would eventually lead to the creation and accep tance of medical treatments like Human Growth Hormone therapy SF scholars will also be interested in Squire's larger project of injecting speculative fiction into important policy debates, though they may feel that it is beyond the scope of their own intellectual projects. Squire believes that in bioethics, "literature can articulate an alternative to the dominant discourses of risk management and expert control" that so often inform policy debates (22). She urges policy makers to "consider how the discursive flexibility provided by fiction can serve as a guide to 'the ethics and laws' we must generate in response to novel biomedical strategies" (255). Although Squire provides no concrete policy recommendations, then, her text strongly implies that SF writers should be allowed to participate in ethical and legal decisions involving biotechnology and that their participation should primarily be in the form of fictive treatments of the ethical and legal issues under consideration. And it is pleasant to consider a society where the no-nonsense expert and the imaginative writer are given equal billing. Yet for the SF community the major linlitation of Limillal Lil'es is precisely its status as expert discourse. This book is theoretically dense and readers will need to be at least passingly familiar with the work of Bruno Latour to avoid occasionally feeling at sea. Also, while Squire writes very clearly in general, there are some passages that would give Fredric Jameson at his most opaque a run for his money. Of course, critical theory is often indispensable for framing cultural critique and complex ideas often require complex language for their proper expression, but the consequence of these necessary inclusions is the creation of an ideal readership that at least has graduate training. ;-\n instructor may be able to cull some of Squire's ideas for a lecture, but it would be unwise to assign readings from this book in an undergraduate classroom. "-\dditionally, even those ( )


) who would be comfortable with the text's complexity may be put off by some of its secondary concerns. Squire makes it abundantly clear throughout the text that she is having an extended discussion with her colleagues in science studies. For example, Liminal Lit'es' first chapter is entitled "The Uses of Literature for Feminist Science Studies" and is dedicated to answering two central questions '''Why has feminist literary criticism been so indifferent to the question of science?" and '''Why are feminist science studies so little marked by the methodology and epistemology of literary studies?" (28). Clearly, these are very good questions and Squire should be raising them, but they may seem, well, academic for people who do not see themselves as doing science studies. For someone who is working on biotechnology and SF and employing a theoretically advanced and interdisciplinary methodology, Liminal Lives is a very important text. Many more would be interested in Squire's illuminating analysis, but for most of that group this text will probably become another one of the books that would be read if there was but world enough and time. NONFICTION REVIEW H. G. Wells's The Time Machine Justin Everett Hammond,John R. H. G. We!LrrThe Time Machine:A Reference Guide. Westport, CT and London: Praeger, 2004.176 pages. $79.95 hardbound, ISBN 0313330077. I approached this book, like others of its kind, with some trepidation. Critical editions and reference guides are rarely enjoyable to read. However, I was pleasantly surprised to find Professor Hammond's guide to Wells's novel informative and occasionally engaging. I t is useful, I think, for both literary critics and teachers of science fiction. The organization of the book is not particularly innovative. Like many books of this sort, he begins with a general introduction, followed by a summary of the text and several chapters of historical context and literary analysis. I must say that I found his introductory essay the mos t engaging part of the book. I will unquestionably refer to the biographical information contained in this section the next time I teach the novel. The discussion of the evolution of the novel was also informative. However, I found the organization of the latter part of the book at times confusing. The author's chapters are organized into sub-topics that at moments consist primarily of his own analysis when some review of the opinions of other scholars seems called for. In certain chapters, instead of discussing the various critical lenses that could be used to view (or teach) this book, his analysis is limited by his own mythopoetic perspective. Though he does include a brief bibliographic essay at the back of the book that discusses significant works and trends in criticism, I would have preferred that this come earlier in the book, followed by the author's own analysis. One omission I would like to mention that, in my opinion, would have increased the book's value for me would have been a chapter on approaches to teaching The Time Machine. But these are relatively minor points. Generally speaking, I think Hammond's book is a welcome addition to the scholarship that already exists in this area. NONFICTION REVIEW Voices 0' Vision Amelia A. Rutledge Voices of VZ:I7'OIl: Creators of Sdence Fir/ion and Fantasy Speak, Jayme Lynn Blaschke (Lincoln and London: University of Nebraska Press 2005).194 pages. ISBN 0-8032-6239-6. Paperback. $14.95 The cover illus tration 0 f J ayme Lynn Blaschke's Voices of Vision: Creators of S Lience Fiction and Fantasy Speak creates, via its digital surrealism, a visual pun on the title and an expectation of content more estranged than the solid, informative interviews, dating from 1999 to 2002, that make up this volume. The interviews of SF editors and writers were undertaken for the magazine Eidolon; others were published in Inter:;yne or Blm:k Gate, and several were published on line in, or The Unofficial Green Arrow r,msite. Blaschke indicates for several interviews that he has restored previously-cut material. The interviews are grouped under the headings of ''Vaster than Empires and More Slow: Editors," '1\ Source of Innocent ( )


( ( 2S) Merriment Unique Voices in Speculative Fiction," 'Worlds Finest Comics: The Comic Book Creators," and "I Am Legend: Masters of Fantasy and Science Fiction." The implicit large claims in the headings draw attention to the limited sample of writers Blaschke was able to interview; the last section presents Samuel R Delany, Gene Wolfe, Harlan Ellison, and Jack Williamson, all legendary and all masters, but their presence underlines the exclusionary force of categories, as well as their arbitrariness: Gene Wolfe's section has almost nothing about the "New Sun" series that made him a legend, and his new fantasy series could just as easily have been discussed under "Speculative Fiction." One wonders how Blaschke's acknowledgment of Elizabeth Moon's "gritty fantasy" squares with the "Innocent Merriment" of Part 2. Categories aside, there is much that is useful in this collection. For those who generally read and study novels, the sections focusing on editors and comic book writers and artists may be of greatest interest Blaschke is careful, in the editors' interviews, to ask a generally consistent set of questions, e.g., what seem to be the current trends in magazine publishing or what would constitute an ideal issue of The MagaiJne of FanttJ{)' and Science Fiction (Kristine Katherine Rusch and Gordon Van Gelder) or Analog (Stanley Schmidt), or Asimot

(t6 ) the Red Planet, focusing on how scientific discoveries or conjectures have interacted with societal values over a nearly four hundred-year span. Mars becomes a prominent example of how European (and Euro-American) culture reacted to the Great Decentering of Humanity that began when Ptolemy gave way to Copernicus, Kepler, and Galileo. Mars has been at the center of conflicting paradigms. Sometimes astronomers saw what they needed and wanted to see; sometimes what they saw changed our ways of seeing. Markley does a very fine job of detailing the rise, fall and partial renascence ofLowellian Mars. Percival Lowell went to his grave convinced that Mars was a dying world populated by a noble race of engineers. A couple of years ago, it was easy to scorn Lowell. His canals were a fantasy, and there are almost certainly no intelligent Martians (present company excluded). On the other hand, recent revelations about Mars' apparendy abundant water supply and the presence of trace amounts of methane in the atmosphere suggest that the planet may be richer than we ever imagined, and that it may harbor life, or least geothermal activity. The example that best illustrates for me the wonderful dance that Mars has done with culture involves the differing socio-political assumptions made by Lowell and the man who first described the Schiaparelli. Both believed that the Martians were great engineers who were adapting to desiccation and desertification. The Italian socialist assumed that they must be communists, since such an undertaking would take the total commitment of the populace. The American arch conservative assumed that an engineering elite directed the effort Markley also does a very good job of catching the vehemence with which some people of science have continued to reach sweeping and definitive conclusions based on what even now is very flimsy evidence. Storytelling is certainly one way that science and culture meet and interact. The myriad Martian fictions that have appeared over the last century and more collectively tell their own story of what Mars means to us. Markley's catalog of Martian stories is impressive. He has dug up some pretty well hidden stuff (some of which should be allowed to go back into obscurity). The sheer volume ofliterary output results in some important works getting short shrift. Hence, his discussions of The War 0/ the Worfdr and The Martian Chronicles are not very comprehensive. I found his treatment of Edgar Rice Burroughs to be important and convincing. Markley tends to give more space to obscure items, no doubt because very few readers will know them. His discussions of Lasswitz's On Two Planets and Bogdanov's Red Star and Engineer Menni help to broaden readers' awareness of just how ubiquitous Mars has been in fictional visions of twentieth century political and social thought. The intellectual tie-ins are more important to this book than aesthetic concerns; hence the movie Rocketship X-M, which mesmerized me as a boy but which I now know is really quite lame, gets a fair amount of ink without much of it being devoted to its cinematic shortcomings. In this same vein, the book omits Zelazny's "A Rose for Ecclesiastes," perhaps the most elegant and evocative of all Martian fictions. Absent too is A. E. Van Vogt's ''The Enchanted Village," a tale that gives a prescient kick in the pants to Zubrinites who want to terraform Mars because it is our destiny to make the universe fit our needs. Markley wisely and effectively devotes an entire chapter to Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars trilogy, affording it the place it deserves as the premier achievement in late twentieth-century Martian lit. Robinson has consciously responded to old para digms and boldly described new ones, and Markley has elucidated the process very well. Markley's research is exhaustive. As a cultural critic, he must and does survey artifacts from a variety of disciplines, including hard and pop science, social theory and lit crit. No one who writes a book like this can find everything that's ever been written on the subject. I am sorry to say that he does not cite either my 1999 article on the Martian Megatext in]FA (which he really should have found) or political scientist Carl Swidorski's insightful piece on Robinson's trilogy in The Utopian Fantastic (2004) (which probably appeared too late for consideration). I think that my discussion of metaphor and Swidorski's analysis of Martian Marxism in Robinson would have been useful to him, although I hasten to add that I certainly learned much more from his book than he would have from my article. Markley's prose is sound and clear. I t is not especially flashy. He occasionally exhibits passion, such as when he trashes the Space Shuttle and Strategic Defense Initiative as pork barrel diversions or counters Robert Zubrin's interplanetary Manifest Destiny. I imagine that Markley would be as horrified as I to see First Officer Zubrin blast off for Mars under the command of Captains Rumsfeld or Wolfowitz. This must have been a hard book for its author to finally abandon since we learn new things or make new knowledge about Mars almost daily. Also, as a co-author of a book with a high price tag, I commiserate with Markley, whose book is probably too expensive for many who would love to dig into it. Perhaps his book will spur new interest in some of the lost contributions to Martian musing, such as those of Lasswitz and Bagdanov. Perhaps, too, it will cause some readers to think more about the ethics of space exploration, a serious ( )


( ( concern for all of us and a topic cen tral to this book. Dying Planet certainly deserves a place on library shelves, and every good Martian should peruse it since in our minds Mars is very much alive. FICTION REVIEW Cultural Breaks Donald M. Hassler Brian Aldiss, Cultural Breaks. San Francisco: Tachyon, 2005.237 pages. $24.95 Hardcover. ISBN 1892391260. This new collection of twelve short stories by Brian Aldiss includes three very short pieces, never before published, as well as some substantial novella-length pieces from 1968 and 1978. The new pieces are wonderful--only eleven printed pages-and worth the cost of the book just in themselves. Two deal with small insects, a bee and a beetle, and the third titled ''National Heritage" is about a man who accumulates ninety recorded disks of every utterance he has made in his life, and then the disks are destroyed. The insect shorts, also, are about readers and writers and potential destruction. In other words and in short, Aldiss is exhaustively self-conscious and reflective about the writing process, about the examined life and its precarious ness. The longer, more classic pieces, reprinted from and other respectable venues, are similarly reflexive about writing and, also, about decaying British colonialism. Previously, Aldiss has published several collections of short fiction, which is perhaps his favorite mode although he has done series novels, and at least two "Best of" collections. None of that is here in this book. But what is here is wonderful Aldiss-witty, urbane, trivial and silly at times, but always the serious writer and champion of writing. The book includes a clever and sensitive introduction written by Andy Duncan which notes that the collection is intended as a celebration of the eightieth birthday of Aldiss and that it has been generated, in part, by his fans and friends from the annual International Conference for the Fantastic in the Arts. I have never made the March pilgrimage to the ICFA in order to meet Aldiss there, but I have read about and seen pictures of its fecundity and lushness as a celebration of the arts with Aldiss at the center of events always. I first met Aldiss myself at the 1978 SFRA conference in Iowa where also we had Ursula Le Guin, Gene Wolfe, and Darko Suvin in attendance; and the tone and feel of that conference, as I recall, was much different from ICFA as Duncan describes it in this book. At that moment nearly thirty years ago, I had just discovered through his Billion Year Spree that Aldiss was one of the few people who valued as much as I did the nearly-forgotten work of Erasmus Darwin as important in the origins of SF. Aldiss is an individual who has had a remarkable run as a champion and player of the work of imagination whether it takes place in a stem Iowa setting or in the hothouse of Florida or in his Oxfordshire garden with small insects. Finally, I sense that Aldiss somehow has inherited the tough British endurance and flair for diplomacy that has allowed him to range the planet all these years on behalf of the imagination and writing. This has resulted in a genuine "cultural break" for us all. So buy this book, save the disks, and watch Aldiss work his nearly alchemic magic of creation and recreation. pages. FICTION REVIEW Century Rajn David Mead Alastair Reynolds, CenturyRnin, New York: Ace Books, 2005 [First u.s. edition]. ISBN 0-441-01290-6 $24.95 HC 512 Alastair Reynolds' most recent novel is a 'stand-alone' and is not set in the 'Revelation Space' cosmos. But it is like them in a number of ways: it employs some exciting super-science ideas that are integral to the story (not just window dressing), it portrays a rather bitter future in which humanity has splintered into a number of violently competitive political factions, and its human characters are often harsh, driven and distinctly unIikeable. Century Rain might appropriately have been called 1\rtifact,' had that title not been used already for books by Greg Benford and Kevin]. Anderson. Some three hundred years in our future, Earth has become a barren object, of anthropologi cal and political interest only. For surviving humanity, this world has become a strange, remote and dangerous historical relic )


(28 ) which has been rendered lifeless, and nearly inaccessible, as a result of human error which loosed a 'nanocaust' -a mass extinction of all organic life effected by nanotechnological mechanisms run amok. What little history remains to humanity is a puzzle locked beneath the ice that covers most of the planet, reachable from mankind's orbital habitats only at enormous risk of infection by the intelligent nanorganisms that permeate almost every cubic inch of the planetary ecology. What remains of humanity survives in Earth-orbit (in a vast complex of habitats known collectively as Tanglewood) and on the various worlds of the solar system. The descendents of the nanocaust seem quite comfortable there, empowered by a high level of technology but divided into bitter political factions that for the past century have fought hot and cold war over the problem of what to do with Earth. Do you treat it as a memento mori, a telling warning to mankind of its hubris, a mere artifact to be mined for its sad remnants of human history? Or do you use even more nanotech to reclaim and terraform Terra, destroying the past in order to reconquer and repopulate mankind's homeworld? The violence of the conflict between 'Thrashers and Slashers may seem exaggerated to readers at first, until we realize the pettiness of so many political divisions in the here-and-now. Verity Auger is a Thrasher historian, searching the glaciated remnants of Paris for bits and pieces of the past. In deep trouble when a student assistant is infected by nanocytes and dies, Verity is sent on an extraordinary and wonderful adventure to Paris in 1959. But this Paris is not the gigantic artifact whose history Verity has labored at great sacrifice to recover from the nanocaust. This Paris exists at the end of an alien-created hyperweb wormhole on an Earth that seems to be descended from an exact copy of our world as it was in the 1930s, a snapshot evolving inside a vast artificial containment vessel at a distant and unknown site somewhere in the l\1ilky Way. The existence of the alternate Earth, which seems to be a backup copy of our world, is undeniable; artifacts are being sent back up the wormhole by specialists Verity knows. But those anthropologists may be in trouble, perhaps at the hands of political factions among the Slasher "Polity" who are willing to eradicate all life on the copy-Earth in order to resettle it with their order of humanity and try again. Told in parallel with Verity's investigations of the ruins of Paris is the story of a murder investigation in Paris in 1959 by an American named Floyd. Floyd and his sax-playing ex-cop partner Andre Justine are private detectives by day, jazz musicians when they can find work -by night. They are hired to look into the death of Susan White of Tanglewood, Dakota, who turns out to be one of the anthropologists Verity Auger is being sent to rescue. As Verity has labored to reconstruct the puzzle of ancient Paris, so Floyd struggles to decode the mysterious documents the increasingly mysterious Susan has left for her sister. Through the magic of the alien hyperweb, Verity and Floyd connect, discover the reason for Susan's murder, and join forces to thwart thedestruction of copy-Earth. And they fall in love believably. ;\lthough it is a great talent to create characters who seem 'natural' in a remote future, both recognizably human yet also appropriately other, Reynolds' charac ters in the Revelation Space novels (Revelation Space, Chasm Czry, Redemption Ark,Absolution Gap) have always seemed to me insufficiently sympathetic. Happily, the characters which Reynolds develops in Century Ri1in seemed very plausible, perhaps because for much of the book we arc reading about events in our recent past, not the distant post-nanocaust, future. l\loreover, the humanization of the tech which informs this story is really quite clever. Really, who would have thought that the trip down a cosmic wormhole would be bumpy? To say much more about the plot and there is a lot more to it would be to ruin the fun. And it is fun, well worth reading. Reynolds is one of the bright stars of the British SF firmament, with McAuley, Mieville, Banks, Harrison and Hamilton. This book will confirm his growing reputation as a writer of great sf. FICTION REVIEW Ljyet From Planet Earth Warren G. Rochelle Effinger, George ;\lec, edited by Marty Halpern. Iit'l!!from Planet Earth. Urbana, Illinois: Golden Gryphon Press, 2005. 363 pages, cloth, $25.95 ISBN: 1-930846-32-0. I have not read a lot of Effinger's work before I found Iit'e!jrom Planet Earth in my mail box a few days before leaving for Las Vegas, and so I didn't know quite what to expect. That each story had an introduction written by a science fiction notable, such as Michael Bishop, l\1ike Resnick, Howard Waldrop, Pamela Sargent, to name just a few, seemed promising. I had, after all, promised Phil I would read it on the plane going to and coming from Las Vegas and this year's SFRA annual ( )


( conference. I did began to get an idea of what Effinger might be about when I read Michael Bishop's introduction to "The Aliens Who Knew, I r-.1ean, Everything." According to Bishop, Effinger wrote stories of "surreal intelligence and deadpan wit" (3) and tills first story was among his "downright funniest," with its "allusions to lowbudget alien-invasion films from the 1950s and 1960s" and the echoes of such "influential Cold War satire" as that of Robert Sheckley and \Villiam Tenn (4-6). An individual alien in the story was a nup; the plural, nuhp. Or, in reverse: pun and ph un-all of which Bishop found phunny. Puns, phun, Sheckley, Tenn. Satire. And if I didn't get it from Bishop's intro, I surely did from George Zebrowski's Afterword for the same story: "Effinger belongs to the great line of SF's satirical humorists, beginning \vith .-1.esop and Jonalhan Swift and continuing with William Tenn ... Robert Sheckley ... (23). TIlere was my context, and an affirmation of what I kept thinking as I read "The Aliens \Vho Knew, I Mean, Everything": this story reminds me of the stories I read in Dimensions of Sheckley: the Selected Works of Robert Sheckley (reviewed in SFRA RezieIl/261). It is a tale about taste. The nuhp, who show up unexpectedly in true "take me to your leader style" at the \vhite House, are blessed with true knowledge of what is the best of, well, everything. The best flowers? Hollyhocks. The best human musical composition? The score from the motion picture Ben Hur, by Miklos Rozsa. The greatest novelist: ,-\Iexander Dumas -1.nd the nuhp are so damn cheerful and assertive about their unarguable opinions and insistent on sharing them that they drive everybody crazy. They came, offering us a way to end poverty and hunger and overpopulation-and their insufferable opinions. They give us their intelSteIIardrive, and we use it to leave the Earth in droves, fleeing the nuhp's oh-so-helpful advice. TIllis: room in the cities, more than enough food, and more than enough jobs. This, I thought, is Effinger: science fiction satire, poking fun at human foibles, perhaps a bit "surreal," science fiction of Ihe absurd, humor sometimes a bit black, but humor nonetheless. TIle collection's second tale, the Last \Vars at Once," which I am pretty sure I read while cooling my heels in the Richmond allport, my flight delayed for;m hour, reaffirmed my take on Effinger -1. Final Solution is offered to racial tension: 30 days of open warfare between blacks and whites. TIlen, between men and women. Roman Catholics and Protestants. The young versus the old, the right-handed yersus the left-handed. Definitely poking fun at human foibles and the humor is definitely black. The third story, "Two Sadnesses," (read, most likely, at thirty thousand feet), made me reassess my take on Effinger and this collection and in what context to place it. .-1.ccording to Howard Waldrop, who introduces the story, several of what today are considered the classics of children's literature, such as The 1./7indin tbe (1908) ;Uld lFillnie-the-Poob (1926) were written in the first half of the twentieth century, many before \Vorld War 1. Waldrop argues that in one sense ulese stories reflect the "Great Change": "from rural to urban, from ilie handcrafted to the mass-produced." It is, \Valdrop argues, as if writers like Grallame sensed "the Great Change coming in some form or shape. \Vhat it was, they didn't know. but they felt things would never be ilie same, and wanted to get it all down, before it was all gone: (41). For l\lilne, it is a reaction to the war's honors and the changes that came with them. Effinger does what is difficult to do: he uses Grallame and Milne as models, capturing the tone and feel of ilieir \vork, and producing what I would call a postscript to both writers, one last tale for Rat ;Uld Mole, and for Pooh and Piglet and Eeyore. This time, "\,(,11 at happens to them ... is exactly like what would happen to them if their original authors had been afforded glimpse of fifty or sixty years into ilie future ... "(42): Vietnam, defoliation, Orange, pollution, urban sprawl. The result: a heartbreaking and disturbing story, a parable, a caution;!ry tale. So, SF satire is not Effinger's only generic context. Like all good writers, he does not haye a single vision; he has more than one dream. In addition to the parable, which is often used in speculative fiction, he conducts his own wought experiments, such as "One," which asks: what if we arc alone in the universe? What then? Or "l\I)' Old l\lan," a "sad, fUllny"twowords which could sum up Effinger-tale of a m,m's coming-of-age, as he comes to terms with his feelings for an abusive father, and also a tale of what seems to be a haunted computer chess game. The narrator of" l\1)' Old '\Ian" is also an example of aooilier of Effinger's "recurring dream [s]": "the image of the "lone man trying his hest to perform an assigned task iliat is both impossible and meaningless" (86). 'IllOmas Placide, the protagonist of "Eyerythmg but I lonor" is yet another, as he seeks to rewrite history by traveling through time to murder a particular Confederate general, "an act he's certain will liberate American blacks from the racist hardships ;U1d injustices of the twentieth century" (125). C;i\Tn Effinger's usc of Irony and the darkness of his humor, the even darker warnings of his parables, it is not surprising that Placide's "noble" efforts meet with disaster after-disaster. TIlere is one last contcxt for Effinger: the writing teacher. TIle 0. Niemand stOlies in this collection are evidence of iliat. Like "Two Sadnesses," Effinger again docs what is difficult: these stories arc \\Tittcn and written well in the style of O. Henr", Steinbeck, Lardner, Thackeray, Thurber, and O'Connor. and at the same time. the" are ( )


(JO ) successful science fictjon tales. Gardner Dozois, in his introduction to these eight tales, argues these are both "stunts, of course, finger-exercises, muscle flexing" and examples of great writing skill, as they are lessons in control oflanguage and tone and voice. What might a scholar do with this collection? For the Effinger scholar, it would go on the same shelf as the other posthumous Golden Gryphon Press Effinger publication, the 2003 short story collection, Budqyeen Nights. Although that universe, "the i\lusltm underworld of the Budayeen" doesn't appear in this collection, together these two books would give the scholar and the reader a sense of the range of Effinger's vision and talent and the diversity of rus dreams wy course that focuses at allan SF humor would have a place for lilt! on the book list. .wd any course that examines the darker, dystopic and often parabolic visions of SF would also be suitable for this collection. If either course gives students the option of writing a story of their own, following Effinger's example of the use of literary models would not be a bad way to start. Perhaps lize!(rom Planet Earth was an apt choice for a trip there and back again, from Fredericksburg to Las Vegas: the ordinary and mundane, the surreal Gust remember standing in the middle of the Imperial Palace casino), and the darkly funny. As for the rest-the cautionary tales, the lessons in writing, the coming of age and the single man alone with an impossible task motifs-what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas. Or gets told as a story to the Galactic Overlords on Planet 10. They like good stories. FICTION REVIEW Hine Muses Philip Snyder Forrest ,-\guirre and Deborah Layne, cds. Nine Muses. \X!ilsonville, OR: \X:heatland Press, 200S. Trade paperback. ISBN 0-9755903-6-7. In tlus welcome offering from small press publisher \X,lleatland Press, editors ,-\gllirre and Layne present an original anthology feahlfing some of the top women writers in science fiction, fantasy, and experimental fiction. AJong willi an inlroductory essay by Elizabeth Hand, Nine l\luses collects a baker's dozen of stories exploring the mysterious relations between creative spirits and the people, places, and energies that inspire them. As is common in tllemed antllOlogies, the contributors vary widely in their degree of adherence to the volume's ostensible unifying device. Of the stories here that rely most explicitly on the literal presence of muses, one of the most impressive is Kit Reed's "Spies." \Vriting in celebration of Thalia, i\luse of Comedy and Idyllic Poetry, Reed brings the Fates down to Georgia, whe rc their lethal designs arc comically thwarted by, yes, the Muses. Frankly allegorical-the clima.'C features "Death watching while .-\rt staves her off" the story also shines as a piece of funny, homegrown magic realism, and reads like a weird lovechtld of '-leil Gaiman and I'lannery O'Connor. ,-\nother fine story with a literal muse is Jai Clare's "Without the Dreaming," the poit,1Jlant tale of a lost muse, once the of dreams, who has faded over time into a domesticity "scrubbed, cleaned, and flattened." ,\nd in "She Who Remembers," a story for Clio, !\!use of History, Diana Rogers con stnlcts (or perhaps reconstnlcts) a Choctaw myth the collision of1':ative culture with its white military conquerors. ror most of the other writers here, the notion of a i\luse figures chiefly as a conceptual springboard, often leading to intnguingexperiments with narrative structure and style. One of the best of these is Ruth Nestvold's of Eutopia;' an assemblage of textual fragments from and about the Lost Generation, blending the voices of real and imagined literary fit,ttlres in a vivid evocation of the High era. TIle other standout is Kaspar's "!\Ielody," an offering to Futerpe, "Iuse nf illlIsic. Set in a nursing home. "illelody" is a quiet bllt powerful meditation on senescence, on social abandonment, and on the redrmpti\'e value of music as a spirihlal escape. It's a beauty. On OClaSlon. h()\\T\"l"r, the illuses bring dark dreams indeed. Sarah Totton's "The Teascwater Fire," for instance, scrn's lip a PinollhlO stnrl" that is distinctly h1iisted, nasty and chilling. ,w even darker delight is afforded by emerging writer lleathcr Shaw's "Skatehirding." Dedicated to \irania, illuse of .\stronomy, "Skatebirding" begins as science fiction: a space station sClcnhst IS gr(lllndcd bl" her pregnancy, confined to a bubble town on Earth because the open environment isn't safe for mothers-tn-he .. \ gmllp ()f friendl)" skateboarders add a punk note to the story, and along the way, Shaw works in some pnwocahn' takes Oil "lloll1elalld Illtegnt\"" politics and fem11list Issues. In the end, tllOugh, II's a horror story, with an IIlcrcdiblc sting III ItS 1;\11. ( )


( ( Not all of the stories here achieve the same high standard. Beth Bemobich's ''The Colors of Tomorrow" is essentially a retelling of "Cinderella" that could have been one of the lighter contributions to Ellen Dadow and Terri Wmdling's long-running series of adult fairytale anthologies. Victoria Elizabeth Garcia's "Ask For Her Hand" invents an amusingiyeccentric family, but doesn't do much with it. Tamar Yellin's "The Day After Tomorrow" tells a story of unrequited love -two stories, actually, linked by one of the four characters -but the ingenuity of the narrative structure is diminished by the lack of much corresponding depth in its characters. Toiya Kristen Finley's "Cue the Violins," meanwhile, is a promising story about a tangle of abusive relationships -a story, ultimately, about fates and destinies -but for me, at least, the story is too self-conscious, too entranced with its own telling to be genuinely inviting. Competent stories all, but not the best of the lot. That honor would have to be shared by Ursula Pflug's "The Eyes of Horus" and Jessica Treat's haunting "Meeting M." Pflug's story is urban fantasy at its best, set in the world of young people and temp jobs in Toronto, a city which mayor may not be host to reptilian aliens, ancient magic, and news flashes from the future. But though the story is awash in the spirits of Egyptian gods, telepathy, and time travel, what draws us in are its characters, their struggles and losses, and not just the shiny surfaces of the narrative's clever inversions, reversals, and twists. Pflug writes magic realism with heart. Equally moving, and equally sophisticated, is Jessica Treat's account of a literal meeting between a writer and a muse who may be an alter ego, and whose role is subsumed at story's end into the protagonist's own identity. We make our muses as best we can, the story suggests. Of both the difficulty and the deep rewards of such an enterprise, this fine collection of stories bears ample testimony. )


Sc.ence F.c on Research Assoc.a on www.slra.ora funrasy literature and film Foundedin 1970, the sFRA was organized to tedllng; toerxrurageandasuespcr mcrs, probx>,libr.u:ians, readcrs,authOIS, year. BritiID mo1aIfy joumaI, withaitical, historical, and bibliographical bookd\crs, ediroo, publishcrs, archivists, andmolars in many di;ciplines. Academic articles, reviews, andletters.Add to dues: $31.50 surface; $39 airmail affiliarion is nota requirement fOr membership. V!Sit the sFRA Website at dmp://wwwmorg>. For a membership application, mntaa the sFRA Treasurer or sec the website. SFRA Benefits The New York ReviewofScience Fiction. Discountedsubsaiption rate fOr sFRA members. Twdve issues peryear. Reviews and features. Add to dues: $26 domestic; $35 $28 domesticinstiturional; $32 Canada; $40 UK&Europe; $42 Pacilic&Australia jlJllTl1ili ofihe Fantasticin!heAns (]FA). Discounted subscription rate fur sFRA FxJmpo/I11ion. Four i&<;ucs perp TheoidestmoIadyjournaI in thefidd, withcriticaI, members. Four issues pcrp ScholadyjoumaI, withaitical andbiblio-historical, and bibliographical articles, book reviews, letters. occasional special graphical artides and reviews. Add to dues: $30 domestic; $40 overseas. topic and an annual index. Science-FictiunStudies. Three issues per year. This molady journal includesaitical, Critical and crearive worh Add to dues: $25. historical, and bibliographical articles, reviewarticles, reviews, notes, letters, intcmationalmvcragc, and an annual index. SFRAAnnualDirrrwry. One issue perp Members' names, adcIr=, phone, e-mail adt:in=, and spcrial int<:!ThlS. SFRA Review.. Four issues per year. This newsietter/joumaI includes extensive book reviews ofboth nonfiction and fiction, review articles, listings of new and fOrthcominglxxk The Review aroprintsnewsaboutsFRAintemal_calIs fOr papers, and updareson 'hUlks in SFRAlistseruThesFRAlisoo.vaIIOWSllSOlSwithe-mailaa:ountstopa;te-maiIs to all subscribers of the listserv, round-robin style. It is used by sFRA members to discuss topics and news ofll1terest to the SF community. To sign on to the listselV octo obtain further infurmation, contact the list manager, Len Hatfield, at> or den.hatfidd@vc.eciu>.HewilIsui=ibeyou.Ane-mail!mtautomatically to newsubsaibers gives more infOrmation about the list. SFRA Execu ye Comm ee President David C. Mead Vice President Bruce L. Rockwood Texas A&M Univ-Corpus Christi Corpus Christi, TX 78412 Dept. of Finance and Legal Studies Bloomsburg University 400 East Second Street Bloomsburg, PA 17815 Immediate Past President Peter Brigg #120 Budgell Terrace Toronto, ON M6S 1 B4, Canada Treasurer Donald M. Hassler Department of English p. O. Box 5190 Kent State University Kent, OH 44242-0001 Science Fiction Research Association Secretary Warren Rochelle English, Linguistics, Speech University of Mary Washington 1301 College Avenue Fredericksburg, VA 22401-5358


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