Scraps of the Untainted Sky: Science Fiction, Utopia, Dystopia

By Tom Moylan | Go to book overview

Notes

Preface
1.
When I refer to the historical antinomies of Utopia and Anti-Utopia, I use uppercase. When I refer to specific instances of utopian expression (texts or social practices), I use lowercase. The textual forms of Utopia, therefore, are the utopia (or eutopia), dystopia, and critical utopia. The textual form of Anti-Utopia is the anti-utopia.
2.
This next political step needs to build dialectically on the theoretical and organizational gains of the social movements of the 1980s. However much it is time for a new stage of local and global alliance politics, that emerging strategy can only move forward if it is self-reflexively based in the broad and international commitment to the diversity and democracy that was advocated and seized in the previous years; for an incisive articulation of this position, see Anuradha Dingwaney and Lawrence Needham, "The Difference That Difference Makes," Socialist Review ( 1996), 5-47.
3.
On the "bad soul" of sf, see Darko Suvin, "Afterword: With Sober, Estranged Eyes," Learning from Other Worlds: Estrangement, Cognition and the Politics of Science Fiction and Utopia ( 2000).
4.
An extended study of the official ideological work of sf is a very different project from this one. For now, however, see H. Bruce Franklin, War Stars ( 1988); Constance Penley, NASA/Trek: Popular Science and Sex in America ( 1997); Carol Stabile, Feminism and the Technological Fix ( 1994). In their studies of the military ( Franklin), the space program ( Penley), and reproductive science ( Stabile), these cultural critics have adduced some of the ways in which the sf imaginary is mobilized within official discourses to produce and reproduce hegemonic institutions and practices. For a creative take on the power of the sf imaginary in the mainstream consciousness, see William Gibson, "The Gernsback Continuum," Mirrorshades:The Cyberpunk Anthology ( 1988), 1-11.

Chapter 1
1.
See Bruno Latour and Steve Woolgar, Laboratory Life:The Social Construction of Scientific Facts ( 1986). I am grateful to my research assistant, Donna Messner, for making this

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Scraps of the Untainted Sky: Science Fiction, Utopia, Dystopia
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Permissions ix
  • Preface xi
  • Part One - Science Fiction and Utopia 1
  • 1 - Dangerous Visions 3
  • 2 - Absent Paradigms 29
  • 3 - Daring to Dream 67
  • Part Two - Dystopia 109
  • 4 - New Maps of Hell 111
  • 5 - The Dystopian Turn 147
  • 6 - The Critical Dystopia 183
  • Part Three - Dystopian Maneuvers 201
  • 7 - Kim Stanley Robinson's Other California 203
  • 8 - Octavia Butler's Parables 223
  • 9 - Marge Piercy's Tale of Hope 247
  • 10 - Horizons 273
  • Notes 285
  • Bibliography 333
  • Literary Bibliography and Filmography 367
  • Film and Video 373
  • Index 375
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