Feminist Science Fiction Resource Guide: long intro

Introduction: Extended Play version

This resource guide provides information on several different types of sources which may be used to find information about feminist science fiction. The information included here is not comprehensive; rather, it represents a variety of options and materi al to begin a survey of the critical work on this subject.

Although bibliographies of science fiction are included as resources, the books, articles, and periodicals described here are comprised of primarily or exclusively secondary critical or review material. The electronic sources are more eclectic; they tend to focus on primary materials as well as information about authors, conventions and electronic conferences.

The subject of feminist science fiction raises some other questions of limitations. What exactly is feminist science fiction? What is"feminist"? what is "science fiction"? Both terms are essentially shorthand terms for large unwieldy categories; my us e of them is inclusive. Consequently, by feminist science fiction I refer to works concerned with or identified as being:

feminist; technology-based; paranormal; abnormal; writing about women; writing by women; writing informed by feminism; writing informed by feminist theory; writing about feminists; science fiction; the future; other planets; aliens; alternativ e histories; fantasy; utopias.

My definition of feminist includes a questioning of social and political conventions supporting and supported by patriarchy, including gender roles. Therefore, some texts presented here focus on "alternative sexuality" rather than feminism explicitly. T his area offers excellent resources for finding feminist, or at least feminism-friendly, science fiction. And there arenŐt many other equivalent publications focusing specifically on feminist science fiction.

Another concern with this subject area is its timing: this is a new area; most primary and secondary works have been published since 1970, and more new works appear every year. No one reference book could adequately survey or keep up with the material. Furthermore, since many titles appear only as mass-market paperbacks, most could be out of print by the time a reference book was published. Therefore, although many excellent print sources are included in this resource guide, researchers cannot rely on these materials to provide the most current information. On-line databases and the WWW will offer better access to the most recent developments and publications.

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