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Sponsored by Ursula K. Le Guin, in spirit and power literary and feminist, the AnsibleFest will be held in Bilbao the next 21 - 22 September 2018 with lectures, panels on science fiction and feminism, film screenings, workshops, a publishing fair, and even toy library for children.
Imagine a device of communication between distant planets capable of overcoming any space-time barrier. No, better not do; Ursula K. Le Guin, one of the mothers of the science fiction, as us - as in almost all-, describing the invention of the 'ansible' in his novel 'have-nots' (1974). A gadget so powerful that a few years later a group of science fiction authors received the message, and I think in 1977 the Wiscon, the first feminist science fiction and fantasy, which is held every May in Madison (Wisconsin). And the expansive wave transfer new frontiers, faster than the light; the ideas jumped from one workbook to another, from one head to the next, until you get to Bilbao, the new Madison the fantastic feminist, where in September will take place the first edition of the AnsibleFest. And how could it be otherwise, it all started with a 'What if…?'
"The idea arose of reeds between Arrate Hidalgo and Laura Gaelx, chatting about books and projects. In these situations we are to say things like: "And what molaria fit…?" and the festival all of a sudden we saw it as impossible. Were the desire, some experience and, above all, the feeling that the people he was doing lack a feminist space to talk about the transformative power of speculative fiction without having to go through the rim of the table "women" of the conventions to the use. The nice thing to start thinking about AnsibleFest was that we started of ideas that are more complex than those bases that still have to fight in the mainstream ("women write science fiction", for example). We have been well that Arrate has the good fortune to take five years going to WisCon, because in a way we can learn from their successes and failures and bring the energy of an institution's legendary feminist in the world", explained the organizers of the festival, including translators, editors, writers and, above all, lovers of science fiction.
"The authors of science fiction have still a visibility almost zero. You just have to see what happens when someone says: 'There are no women writing science fiction' and someone says: 'Well if: Ursula Le Guin'. This very well, but there are hundreds more."
One of the mighty works of literature is this powerful 'what if…', which gives the possibility to authors and readers to explore alternative futures or the possible consequences of the decisions we make as a society and the oppressions we suffer, something that has already claimed the writer Ursula K. Le Guin in relationship to the situation of women.
For the four founders of AnsibleFest, science fiction is political because it is our place in the world, but, in the end, what keeps us in suspense is the story that is told. "The good thing of fantastic literature is that you can delete or shape the axes of oppression in the real world, creating imaginary universes so attractive that its political element comes to you in a much more direct: "And if there were no gender assigned at birth? What if there was a matriarchal utopia in symbiosis with the ocean to the point of being invaded…?'is not only a platform for analysis, but expands our way of feeling and thinking thanks to the famous 'sense of wonder'. And point out that, in spite of the many references of writers from the beginnings of the genre - 'Frankenstein' of Mary Shelley, without going any further, is considered the first science fiction novel of the story, even today its visibility is almost zero.
Octavia Butler: Slavery, scars and time travel
ONE OF THE GREAT FEMINIST RECOMMENDED BY ANISIBLEFEST fictions.
"You just have to see what happens when someone says 'No women writing science fiction' and someone answers, with all its good intention, 'Well if: Ursula Le Guin'. That is all very well, and you have to read it and reeditarla more, but where are James Tiptree, Jr. (pseudonym of Alice Sheldon), Eleanor Arnason, Nalo Hopkinson, Octavia Butler, Pat Murphy, C.J. Cherryh or hundreds more?
In this case we speak of perhaps a triple invisibility at the state level for being women, writing style and not be translated. We lose a genealogy that comes to us in fragments. The bombing of Ann Leckie baby much of the sagas of space opera of C.J. Cherryh, for example. Wouldn't we want to be able to read it to her, too?" summary.
A second golden era of CF feminist?
In Spain, there are initiatives to expand the scope of foreign and Spanish-speaking authors, such as the Ship Invisible, the group of Goodreads 'Leo Authors Fantastic' created by the writer Happiness Martínez, the anthology 'Palabaristas Alucinadas' that edit and this year will publish its fourth volume, and also many writers committed to feminism as Lola Robles, Cristina Jury, Layla Martinez or Elia Barceló, who in his work 'natural consequences' (1994) denounced the infantilization of women.
And although being a woman and write science fiction does not necessarily equal to do so from a feminist perspective that breaks with the clichés of the genre (and social), AnsibleFest admits that there is a growing awareness of the importance of the inclusion and a greater role of female characters, both in the literature and in the cinema, in spite of concern to them "the fagocitacion capitalist feminism". "The stories are changing, expanding and becoming more complex, addressing from identities that challenge the second wave feminism (it is very interesting to read, for example, the criticism that makes the classic Russ, 'The Female Man', from a transfeminista)", they say. And also the works of prominent representatives of the new flows of decolonial and queer science fiction, like Rebecca Roanhorse, J.Y. Yang or Sheree Renee Thomas, are proof of this.
"And if in AnsibleFest…?", he asked, retandolas imagine a utopian end of a feminist science fiction festival? To what they answered: "And if we do not hear a single 'all men' throughout the duration of the festival. Order".
It will be necessary to attend to check if this story more than utopian is oracular. I wish it to be.
The library of AnsibleFest
We have asked the organizers recommend us some feminist science fiction works to whet your appetite for what is coming over the next 21 and 22 September in Bilbao. Takes good note:
In comic we like 'Bitch Planet' Kelly Sue DeConnick and Valentine of Landro, and the number of clips 'Paper', Brian K. Vaughan and Cliff Chiang. In the novels, three recent publications of feminist sharply cut that we recommend are 'kinship' of Octavia Butler, 'New mother' of Eugene Fischer and 'New Amazon', Elizabeth Burgoyne Corbett.