Tag Archives: diversity

Fabulous and Free in SFF: Fictional. Queer. Here.

17 Sep

Hello everyone!  I’m Becca, the new intern for Skiffy & Fanty!  Long story short, I’m ecstatic to be a part of this amazing community and to lend my own voice to it.  I’m happy to announce that I’ll be writing a few articles about the LGBT+ community within science-fiction and fantasy, and it starts here!  

A significant aspect of these articles is the use of the word “queer,” which has been debated for years within the community.  For me, reclaiming the word has been an important part of my own identity, and is one way I can describe myself and others in this context without fear.  Here at the Skiffy and Fanty Show, we’re on our own journey to represent all of the wonderful people in the LGBT+ community, and we feel that using “queer” as an identifier is a more inclusive and supportive way to do so.  Check out this article from Pride.com for more information! Continue reading

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The Intersection: IT

14 Sep

I’m a Stephen King fan. He’s not perfect. No writer is. To this day, I still love his work. Anyway, I read IT ages ago, and the book gave me nightmares. My experience with the book was mostly positive. Mostly. One of the things that I like about King is that his characters often choose to be their better selves under dire circumstances. Also, in The Stephen King-verse, violence isn’t always the answer. I adore that. Of course, this philosophy complicates the task of writing a satisfying ending. Audiences want to see the Big Bad™ roughed up. This is why employing “Love defeats Hate” isn’t a simple or easy way to write a story. And this is why the end of IT…stumbles. To make matters worse, the novel suffers from one of the worst tropes when it comes to female characters: the “Woman equals Love” trope, even the children’s part of the story. The newest movie has similar issues, but at least it didn’t involve raping an eleven/twelve year old girl. I do like the novel—just not that part of it. Which is why I was relieved it wasn’t in this movie. (Thank the gods.) Continue reading

The Intersection: Let’s Talk Double Standards

13 Jul

These days there’s a great deal of discussion about what Diversity means (hint: it doesn’t mean cultural appropriation), why we should or shouldn’t have it, and who is permitted to engage in it. This is, despite the contention and disruption in the community, a very good thing. Change doesn’t happen unless we actively engage it—particularly when the problem in question (systemic bias) is complex and multi-layered. Let me emphasize this again: the issue of diversity in Science Fiction and Fantasy is a complex one. In my experience, it requires extensive self-awareness, a willingness to endure uncomfortable situations and discussions without defensiveness, the ability to understand that a larger, implied context is a factor in communication, and a great deal of humility.

Systemic oppression isn’t an easy problem to resolve. Humanity has been struggling with it since the first human being grabbed leadership of a group and declared another group the enemy. If it were as simple as say, one group “getting over it” or “waiting until the old people die off, carrying their offensive beliefs with them,” it would’ve been resolved generations ago. Continue reading

Signal Boost #11: Tanya DePass (#INeedDiverseGames/From the Margins) and Hope Nicholson (The Spectacular Sisterhood of Superwomen/Love Beyond Body, Space, & Time)

11 Jul

In today’s episode of Signal Boost, Tanya DePass, founder and director of I Need Diverse Games, joins Jen to talk about the importance of diversity in games and the gaming industry, supporting diverse gamers, and the upcoming anthology, From the Margins, a collection of personal essays from marginalized individuals in the game industry (currently accepting submissions). Then Shaun is joined by Hope Nicholson, author of The Spectacular Sisterhood of Superwoman and editor of Love Beyond Body, Space, & Time: An Indigenous LGBT Sci-Fi Anthology, to talk about writing about comic book history from a woman’s perspective and the importance of promoting Indigenous voices through projects like her anthology.

We hope you enjoy the episode!

Note:  If you have iTunes and like this show, please give us a review on our iTunes page, or feel free to email us with your thoughts about the show!

Here’s the episode (show notes are below): Continue reading

Guest Post: Growing up in Fandom in the 1970s, by LJ Cohen

14 Jun

I’m not sure if this still holds true today, but if you came of age in the 1970s, were a strong early reader who had read through all the books specifically written for children, and you were lucky enough to have a sympathetic librarian, you’d be directed to the science fiction and fantasy shelves.

At least that’s my story. The Heinlein juveniles had been published a decade before I was born, but they were the first genre books I read. From there, I found all the Lensman books — written even earlier! I may have only been 10 or 11 when I read these, but even then I was frustrated by the insistence that only one special, fierce woman — to be born in some far future — could be a Lensman. Lenses were objects of power that amplified the qualities within a person. The message I got was that girls, as a rule, didn’t deserve power and couldn’t wield power. That I didn’t deserve power; that I was wasn’t good enough. It angered me that girls weren’t the ones leaping up to explore the stars. Asimov’s Robot books fascinated me, but the only woman portrayed in them — Susan Calvin — was more robotic than the robots. Continue reading

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