Category Archives: WisCon

On My Pilgrimage Soon!

So despite being broke and only having as part-time job I’m still making my annual pilgrimage to WisCon – The Feminist Sci-Fi Conference. A friend of mine calls it visiting the holy land and it is, every year I have great discussions, meet amazing authors,  reconnect with friends that live across the country, have a good party and just relax. After feeling alone in your geekery and politics and the ways they overlap for a year WisCon is like being able to unwind. Don’t get me wrong! It’s not perfect but the asshattery is less powerful and the allies more plentiful in realtime/realspace. It’s feels especially necessary after this last stressful year at school.

I leave in about 30 hours. Sadly this year my friend Jackie, who has been going with me since I started going, won’t be attending this year but my good friend Ivy will be making her second appearance so there’s a boo and a yay. I’m going to be on three separate panels this year:

Men of Color in Media, SciFi, Fantasy, and Horror
The inclusion of Mr. Sulu on the bridge of the Enterprise was hailed as a groundbreaking moment for the portrayal of people of color not just in sci–fi but in popular culture. With Johnny Depp cast as Tonto in the Lone Ranger, remake, how have things changed over the last forty years for men of color? Is it better to have some representation even a Magical Negro, than none at all?

Intersectionality in Fandom                                                                                                       
A more advanced discussion for those ready to work past 101–level panels. A discussion of how disabilities, race, gender, sexual orientation, and other oppressed statuses affect each other. How do we decide which one gets our last remaining spoon?

Nnedi Okorafor’s Genre–Blurring Fiction
Shadow Speaker and Zahrah the Windseeker are companion novels. Shadow Speaker takes place in Nigeria where the world was simultaneously devastated by nuclear war, and changed by mysterious “peace bombs” which caused spontaneous forests, magical abilities, and shifts in space. Zahrah takes place in an alternate dimension version of Nigeria filled with technology that is partially organic, and special people are born with “dada locks” (which are sort of like dreadlocks, but with vines growing through them). Let’s discuss Nnedi’s genre–blurring blend of science fiction, fantasy, and Nigerian folklore in these and her other works.

They all look pretty interesting right? I’ll do my best to blog as the conference happens!

Quick Post! – Transcript Published

Attending WisCon this year I participated in a conversation (among mostly fans of Color) about RaceFail’09, the ramifications of that, the confluence of race and science fiction and race in general. Portions of the conversation were transcribed (with full permission asked and granted of all participants) and appear in the new international peer-reviewed journal Transformative Works and Cultures, Vol 3 (2009). Really good conversation around race and being a fan, check it out if you get the chance:
Pattern recognition: A dialogue on racism in fan communities
Second year of grad school is still kickin’ my ass but hopefully things will slow down after the next couple of weeks and I can get back to blogging more regularly.