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Feminist does not always equal female

A friend sent me a link to an interesting blog entry by L.E. Modesitt, a writer I'm familiar with from the convention scene. I had been impressed with Modesitt's demeanour on panels, particularly when he was the moderator (a tougher job than it sounds). His blog on feminism in speculative fiction was very thoughtful, and I liked his summation of a certain type of workplace discrimination I have seen myself.

I also like his sense of humor, as evidenced by this bit where he's discussing some specific works of spec fic:

'In "Houston, Houston, Do You Read," the solution proposed by James Tiptree, Jr., [Alice Sheldon] was to eliminate the conflict by eliminating males. As a male, I do have a few problems with that particular approach.'

He also mentions Sheri S. Tepper's The Gate to Women's Country, a book that I found chilling because it seemed to suggest equality between the sexes was impossible. In that world, men either treated women like crap, or women treated men like lab animals.

So, this entry makes two points. You don't have to be female to be a feminist, and speculative fiction allows writers to explore all the possibilities.


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