In which I return to talking about Race and Science fictionPosted: June 7, 2007
Apparently one of my major peeves, Race and Science Fiction (which actually has its own category in this blog that you can look at to get an idea of where I stand on the issue) has surfaced again online in dramatic form. Thanks to Pam for pointing me in the direction of some of the relevant posts (and reminding me that Tobias Bucknell and ABM should have been on my blogroll a long time ago)
So, since this is an area I have some (read: a lot) of interest in and also one I haven’t really talked about for quite a while now, I feel some posts coming on especially now that I have so much reference material to work with.
Before I start though let us establish a few basics.
I am a Black African male with a physics degree who works with computers for a living and grew up spending a decent amount of reading time buried in science fiction and fantasy books as well as comics.
I continue to be a fan to this day
I am a therefore fan of genres which barely have room for people who look like me. Or are anything other than straight, white and male as a matter of fact.
To the extent that they do have room for us, we are frequently caricatures of human beings and not afforded any real depth of character.
It does not matter how much science fiction fans like to pretend like the genre is more liberal than others because of its scope, it isn’t. It definitely has the potential to be however at this point it time it is not there yet by a long shot. Its chances of getting there will also not be helped by wilfully delusional (predominantly white)fans and creators pretending that there is nothing wrong with the genre while an increasing number of fans and creators of colour repeatedly tell them there is. If we’re all saying it then its probably not because we met up in a back room somewhere to synchronize our stories. You might just try applying Occam’s razor and assuming we all say the same things because they are common to our experiences as people who love the genre but feel snubbed by it.