Consider the Possibilities
library discussion series looks at gender in science fiction
Reminding us that science fiction is not only about rockets and space aliens, UW-Eau Claire English assistant professor Gloria Hochstein put together a series of discussions exploring the impact of gender roles and the relationships between men and women using recent science fiction literature. “Science fiction allows women writers and other writers to envision worlds that are not tied down by the same social and cultural demands of our society,” she said. Through science fiction, there is a chance to look at society in an original way, extrapolate something that already exists, and take it to the extreme, such as in The Stepford Wives. “I really enjoy science fiction and it’s one of my favorite things to teach, read, and talk about,” Hochstein said. “It is often a very rich genre for letting us look at ourselves.” Her goal in this discussion series is to question. If our gender was constructed in a different way, would that change who we are? The four-part series will include discussions on marital relationships in the 1975 film The Stepford Wives; author Alice Sheldon’s stories and experiences writing under the male pseudonym James Tiptree, Jr.; gender roles in John Varley’s story “Options”; and the marginalized women of Lisa Goldstein’s “Midnight News.” Hochstein also stresses that although it would be beneficial, people do not have to read the stories before attending the discussions. All necessary information will be provided that night. Pre-registration is recommended.
Battle of the Sexes in Late 20th Century Science Fiction • Mondays, Sept. 22, Oct. 6, Oct. 27, Nov. 10 • L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library • 7pm • FREE • 839-5004 • email@example.com