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Reading Science Fiction Politically: Diverging Futures

Mon, May 27 @ 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM

Free – $75.00
Panoramic view of sunset over the old city and the southern and western neighborhoods of Ramallah -2016, credit: Fjmustak
Editor Basma Ghalayini holds a copy of "Palestine +100"
Palestine +100 editor Basma Ghalayini

In Palestine +100: Stories from a Century after the Nakba, edited by Basma Ghalayini, as well as other recent books, Palestinian authors have begun to discover the power of science fiction. “Everyday life, for [Palestinian writers] is a kind of dystopia.” In this situation, “The real future –the actual future — is unknowable. But for SF writers, the mere idea of ‘things to come’ is license to re-imagine, re-configure, and re-interrogate the present.”

This spring, the MEP Science and Visionary Fiction reading group will use this exciting new collection — and related political analyses of the war and political situation now as well as additional short fiction published elsewhere–to expand our understanding of the situation and struggle now in Palestine. And we will also use it to reach further into science fiction’s exploration of a future, just society.

And we will deepen our appreciation of this new literature by reading with it other visions of pathways to a livable future, a just social order on Earth, in fiction and nonfiction:

  • Parable of the Talents, Octavia Butler’s classic tale of the struggles to build a new society against the ravages of Trump-like right-wing terror, climate crisis and economic collapse.
  • Too Like the Lightning, Ada Palmer’s newly published, character-rich story of technologically-driven utopian life two centuries from now and the crisis which arises within it.
  • Archaeologies of the Future, by Fredric Jameson, a masterful assessment of utopian literature from Thomas More to the present.  

This list is tentative and subject to change, other short selections or paring back by the reading group.


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Science Fiction Spring 24 - Attending
Science Fiction Spring 24 - Supporting
Science Fiction Spring 24 - Sustaining

PalestinianSF - RSVP

1 Going


Mon, May 27
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Free – $75.00
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