2nd Annual Science Fiction Studies Symposium at UC-Riverside

If you’re in California on May 27, or have some travel funding available, you should go to the 2nd annual Science Fiction Studies Symposium at UC-Riverside. Rob Latham sent out the following details:

The second annual Science Fiction Studies Symposium will be held on May 27, Thursday, at the University of California, Riverside on the topic of “Animal Studies and Science Fiction.” The Symposium will take place from 2:30-5:00 PM in the Reading Room of the Special Collections and Archives Department of Rivera Library, which houses the J. Lloyd Eaton Collection of Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror, and Utopian Literature. Here is a list of speakers and the titles of their talks:

➢    “Animal Studies in the Era of Biopower”
➢    Sherryl Vint (Brock University)
Sherryl Vint is Associate Professor of English at Brock University in Ontario. She is the author of Bodies of Tomorrow: Technology, Subjectivity, Science Fiction (2007) and Animal Alterity: Science Fiction and the Question of the Animal (2010) and an editor of the collections The Routledge Companion to Science Fiction (2009), Fifty Key Figures in Science Fiction (2009), and Beyond Cyberpunk: New Critical Perspectives (2010). She co-edits the journals Extrapolation, Science Fiction Film and Television, and Humanimalia.
➢    “Talking (for, with) Dogs: Science Fiction Breaks the Species Barrier”
➢    Joan Gordon (Nassau Community College)
Joan Gordon is Professor of English at Nassau Community College in New York. She is a former president of the Science Fiction Research Association, an editor for Science Fiction Studies  and Humanimalia,  and a co-editor of several collections of scholarly essays including Blood Read: The Vampire as Metaphor in Contemporary Culture (1997),  Edging Into the Future: Science Fiction and Contemporary Cultural Transformation (2002), and Queer Universes: Sexualities in Science Fiction (2008). She  recently spent a year as a Fulbright Distinguished Chair at Marie Curie-Sklodowska University in Lublin, Poland, and is at present working on the connections among science fiction, sociobiology, and animal studies, having published related articles for Science Fiction Studies and for the Routledge Companion to Science Fiction.
➢    “The Animal Down-Deep: Cordwainer Smith’s Late Tales of the Underpeople
➢    Carol McGuirk (Florida Atlantic University)
Carol McGuirk is Professor of English at Florida Atlantic University and an editor of Science Fiction Studies. Her column on science fiction in the New York Daily News during the 1980s afforded a close-up view of that decade’s remarkable transformation of the genre. She has written many articles and three books on Robert Burns, including an annotated selection of his poems for Penguin. Her science fiction scholarship has focused on equally mythic yet misunderstood authors, among them Cordwainer Smith. This talk is part of her ongoing project Dominion, which considers literary representations of animals during the three centuries between Milton’s Paradise Lost (1667) and Philip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (1968).

A reception will follow. The event is free and open to the public. Please feel free to attend, spread the word, post or distribute the flyer, etc.

The Symposium is co-sponsored by the journal, by the Eaton Collection, and by the English Department Lecture Committee. My thanks to them all.

The proceedings from the first annual event, on the topic “The Histories of Science Fiction,” were recently published in the journal Science Fiction Studies in March 2010.

Published by Jason W. Ellis

I am an Associate Professor of English at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY whose teaching includes composition and technical communication, and research focuses on science fiction, neuroscience, and digital technology. Also, I direct the B.S. in Professional and Technical Writing Program and coordinate the City Tech Science Fiction Collection, which holds more than 600 linear feet of magazines, anthologies, novels, and research publications.