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Program for The Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium: An Astounding 90 Years of Analog Science Fiction and Fact

If you’re planning to attend this year’s symposium–and we hope that you all are: students, faculty, scholars, and the public–please RSVP by filling out this very short form. This is helps us plan the best symposium possible for you!

An Astounding 90 Years of Analog Science Fiction and Fact

The Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium

Thursday, Dec. 12, 2019, 9:00AM-6:00PM

New York City College of Technology, 285 Jay St., A105, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Organized by Jason W. Ellis (City Tech) and Emily Hockaday (Analog Science Fiction and Fact)

Held in partnership with Analog Science Fiction and Fact and its publisher Penny Publications.

Hosted by the School of Arts and Sciences at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY.

Event hashtags: #CityTechSF and #AnalogSF90th

Analog Science Fiction and Fact began its storied history 90 years ago as one of the most important and influential SF magazines with the publication of its first issue under the title Astounding Stories of Super-Science. During that time, its fabled editors, award-winning writers, recognized artists, and invested readers played roles in the development of one of the longest running and renowned SF magazines, which in turn, influenced the field and adapted to change.

The Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium celebrates “An Astounding 90 Years of Analog Science Fiction and Fact.” Bringing together SF writers, scholars, and fans, the conversations today will reflect on the past, comment on the present, and contemplate the future of Analog SF. Linked to these discussions is the role of SF in a college of technology that recognizes the importance of the genre through its Science Fiction class and support for the City Tech Science Fiction Collection, an archival holding of over 600-linear feet of magazines, anthologies, novels, and scholarship. Together, we will explore these connections.


Schedule

9:00am-9:20am

Breakfast and Opening Remarks

Justin Vazquez-Poritz, Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, New York City College of Technology

Jason W. Ellis, Assistant Professor of English, New York City College of Technology


9:20am-10:00am

Teaching with SF Collections

Jason W. Ellis, “Introduction to the City Tech Science Fiction Collection”

Zachary Lloyd, “Interdisciplinary Approaches to Teaching with Science Fiction”


10:00am-10:10am

Break


10:10am-11:00am

Editors Panel

Moderator:      Frank Wu

Panelists:         Stanley Schmidt

Trevor Quachri

Emily Hockaday


11:00am-11:10am

Break


11:10am-12:40pm

Marginalized Voices and Feminist Futures

Moderator:      Lisa Yaszek

Marleen Barr, “Rachel Rodman’s “The Evolutionary Alice” As Fractured Feminist Fantasy”

Adam McLain, “Visualizing Gendered Voice in Ninety Years of Astounding and Analog

Marie Vibbert, “Visible Women in Astounding and Analog


12:40pm-1:40pm

Lunch


1:40pm-3:10pm

Writers Panel

Moderator:      Emily Hockaday

Panelists:         Phoebe Barton

Leah Cypess

Jay Werkheiser

Alison Wilgus

Frank Wu


3:10pm-3:20pm

Break


3:20pm-4:50pm

Critical Issues in Analog SF

Moderator:      Lavelle A. Porter

Sharon Packer, “Simian Cinema, Darwinian Debates, and Early Analog SF Stories”

Stanley Schmidt, “Humor in Analog

Edward Wysocki, Jr., “Just the Facts: Articles in Campbell’s Astounding and Analog


4:50pm-5:00pm

Break


5:00pm-6:00pm

Keynote Address by Mike Flynn

Introduction:   Trevor Quachri


 

Symposium Participants

Marleen S. Barr is known for her pioneering work in feminist science fiction and teaches English at the City University of New York. She has won the Science Fiction Research Association Pilgrim Award for lifetime achievement in science fiction criticism. Barr is the author of Alien to Femininity: Speculative Fiction and Feminist Theory, Lost in Space: Probing Feminist Science Fiction and Beyond, Feminist Fabulation: Space/Postmodern Fiction, and Genre Fission: A New Discourse Practice for Cultural Studies. Barr has edited many anthologies and co-edited the science fiction issue of PMLA. She is the author of the novels Oy Pioneer! and Oy Feminist Planets: A Fake Memoir. Her latest publication is When Trump Changed, the first single authored short story collection about Trump.

 

Phoebe Barton is a queer trans science fiction writer. Her short fiction has appeared in venues such as Analog, On Spec, and anthologies from Bundoran Press and Alliteration Ink. She is currently writing the interactive fiction game The Tunnel Crew for Choice of Games.

She lives with a robot in the sky above Toronto and is represented by Kim-Mei Kirtland at Howard Morhaim Literary Agency. She serves as an Associate Editor at Escape Pod, and she is a 2019 graduate of the Clarion West Writers Workshop.

 

Leah Cypess sold her first story while in high school, then gave in to her mother’s importuning to be practical and studied biology and law. However, she is now a full-time writer with numerous published short stories, including two published in Analog this year. She is also the author of four young adult fantasy novels, including Mistwood and Death Sworn. Leah grew up in Brooklyn, NY, and has since lived in Boston and in the D.C. area. You can find out more about her writing and her other interests at her website, www.leahcypess.com, as well as on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

 

Jason W. Ellis is an Assistant Professor of English at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY. He holds a Ph.D. in English from Kent State University, M.A. in Science Fiction Studies from the University of Liverpool, and B.S. in Science, Technology, and Culture from Georgia Tech. Most recently, he talked with Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson about the relationship between SF and society on StarTalk Radio.

 

Michael F. Flynn debuted in Analog with “Slan Libh” (11/84) and has contributed regularly ever since. His stories have been nominated for the Hugo Award seven times, most recently for “The Journeyman: In the Stone House” and won the Theodore Sturgeon Award for “House of Dreams.” He won the first Robert A. Heinlein medal for his body of work. His twelve novels include the four-volume FIRESTAR series and the four-volume SPIRAL ARM series as well as the Hugo-nominated Eifelheim and the critically-acclaimed The Wreck of “The River of Stars”. His third collection, Captive Dreams, includes three Analog stories and three new stories written for the collection. He is currently working on The Journeyman, a picaresque novel, and The Shipwrecks of Time, set in the alien world of 1965 Milwaukee.

 

Emily Hockaday is the managing editor of Analog Science Fiction and Fact and Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine. She coedited, with Jackie Sherbow, the horror anthology Terror at the Crossroads: Tales of Horror, Delusion, and the Unknown. She is author of five poetry chapbooks including Space on Earth, What We Love & Will Not Give Up, and the forthcoming Beach Vocabulary. Find out more about her at www.emilyhockaday.com or on twitter @E_Hockaday.

 

Zachary Lloyd has completed an MA in philosophy from The New School for Social Research and is currently a PhD student in comparative literature at CUNY Graduate Center. He is an adjunct instructor in the English department at Brooklyn College.

 

Adam McLain is a Master of Theological Studies candidate at Harvard Divinity School. He studies the intersection of gender, sexuality, theology, and literature, with an emphasis on questions of identity and temporality. At Brigham Young University, his undergraduate, he served for three years as managing editor of the award-winning science fiction and fantasy magazine, Leading Edge, and he has presented papers at Life, the University, and Everything; International Conference for the Fantastic in the Arts; the International Congress on Medieval Studies; North American Science Fiction Association conference; the Society for Utopian Studies; and the Science Fiction Research Association conference.

 

Sharon Packer, M.D., is a Mount Sinai-affiliated psychiatrist who is in private practice in New York and is the author of many journal articles, books chapters, and several academic books, including Neuroscience in Science Fiction Film; Cinema’s Sinister Psychiatrists; Superheroes and Superegos: The Minds behind the Masks; Movies and the Modern Psyche; Dreams in Myth, Medicine and Movies. She edited Mental Illness in Popular Culture; Evil in American Popular Culture; and the forthcoming Welcome to Arkham Asylum.

 

Trevor Quachri, who took the reins of Analog Science Fiction and Fact as editor in 2012, started off as an editorial assistant in 1999 and worked his way up the ladder at Analog and Asimov’s Science Fiction, under Stanley Schmidt, Sheila Williams, and Gardner Dozois, respectively. On top of that, he’s also been a Broadway stagehand, collected data for museums, and executive produced a science fiction pilot for a basic cable channel. He lives in New Jersey with his fiancée, daughter, and way, way too many comic books.

 

Stanley Schmidt (PhD, Physics) was the editor of Analog for a long time (34 years!) and enjoys writing for it just as much now as he did before he became editor in 1978. His recent contributions include the serialized novel Night Ride and Sunrise (now available from FoxAcre Press), and stories, articles, and guest editorials of various shapes and sizes. A small selection of Dr. Schmidt’s many accolades and accomplishments include the Hugo Award for Best Editor: Short Form, the SFWA Solstice Award, and the Robert A. Heinlein Award given for outstanding published works in science fiction and technical writings that inspire the human exploration of space. When not reading Analog just for fun, Dr. Schmidt can be found hiking, traveling, and playing various sorts of music. Find more information about Stanley Schmidt on his website: https://sfwa.org/members/stanleyschmdit.

 

Justin Vazquez-Poritz is the Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Physics at the New York City College of Technology.

 

Marie Vibbert has had six stories in Analog Science Fiction, as well as selling stories to other top markets such as Fantasy and Science Fiction and Lightspeed.  She is the lead programmer for digital libraries at Kelvin Smith Library at Case Western Reserve University.  Her monograph on the headdresses of the fifteenth century in northern Europe has been cited on Wikipedia.

 

Jay Werkheiser teaches chemistry and physics.  Pretty much all the time.  His stories are sneaky devices to allow him to talk about science in a (sort of) socially acceptable way.  Much to his surprise, the editors of Analog and various other magazines, e-zines, and anthologies have found a few of his stories worth publishing.  Many of those story ideas came from nerdy discussions with his daughter or his students.  He really should keep an updated blog and author page, but he mostly wastes his online time on Facebook, MeWe, or Twitter (@JayWerkheiser).

 

Alison Wilgus is a Brooklyn-based writer, editor and cartoonist who primarily works in comics, but her interest in short fiction lead her to attend both Clarion West and Launchpad, and her stories have appeared in venues such as Analog, Interzone, and Strange Horizons. In her spare time Alison and her co-host, Gina Gagliano, make “Graphic Novel TK,” a podcast about the nuts and bolts of graphic novel publishing. Alison’s latest work is Chronin, a duology of historical SF graphic novels, published by Tor books. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram as @aliwilgus.

 

Frank Wu is a transdimensional interspace being, living physically near Boston with his wife Brianna the Magnificent, but regularly projecting his mind across time and space to commune with dinosaurs, eurypterids, and numinous energy beings. Visualizations and written accounts of these journeys can be found in Analog, Amazing Stories, Realms of Fantasy, frankwu.com, and the radiation-hardened memory bunkers of planet Gorsplax.

 

Edward M. Wysocki, Jr. holds a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Johns Hopkins University (1978). He is now retired after more than 30 years with Martin Marietta/Lockheed Martin. He is a Charter Member of The Heinlein Society and a member of the Science Fiction Research Association. He has published various short articles and notes in The Heinlein Journal and Science Fiction Studies; the book chapter, “The Creation of Heinlein’s ‘Solution Unsatisfactory’” In Practicing Science Fiction: Critical Essays on Writing, Reading and Teaching the Genre. Eds. Karen Hellekson et al. (2010); and three self-published books: The Great Heinlein Mystery: Science Fiction, Innovation and Naval Technology (2012), An ASTOUNDING War: Science Fiction and World War II (2015), and Out of This World Ideas: And the Inventions They Inspired (2018).

 

Lisa Yaszek is Professor of Science Fiction Studies in the School of Literature, Media, and Communication at Georgia Tech, where she researches and teaches science fiction as a global language crossing centuries, continents, and cultures. She is particularly interested in issues of gender, race, and science and technology in science fiction across media as well as the recovery of lost voices in science fiction history and the discovery of new voices from around the globe. Yaszek’s books include The Self-Wired: Technology and Subjectivity in Contemporary American Narrative (Routledge 2002/2014); Galactic Suburbia: Recovering Women’s Science Fiction (Ohio State, 2008); and Sisters of Tomorrow: The First Women of Science Fiction (Wesleyan 2016). Her ideas about science fiction as the premiere story form of modernity have been featured in The Washington Post, Food and Wine Magazine, and USA Today and on the AMC miniseries, James Cameron’s Story of Science Fiction. A past president of the Science Fiction Research Association, Yaszek currently serves as an editor for the Library of America and as a juror for the John W. Campbell and Eugie Foster Science Fiction Awards.

Call for Papers: An Astounding 90 Years of Analog Science Fiction and Fact: The Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium

An Astounding 90 Years of Analog Science Fiction and Fact: The Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium

Date and Time:            December 12, 2019, 9:00AM-6:00PM

Location:                     New York City College of Technology, 285 Jay St., A105, Brooklyn, NY

Almost 90 years ago, Analog Science Fiction and Fact began its storied history as one of the most important and influential SF magazines with the publication of its first issue under the title Astounding Stories of Super-Science. During that time, its fabled editors, award-winning writers, recognized artists, and invested readers played roles in the development of one of the longest running and renowned SF magazines, which in turn, influenced the field and adapted to change itself.

The Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium will celebrate “An Astounding 90 Years of Analog Science Fiction and Fact.” It will feature talks, readings, and discussion panels with Analog Science Fiction and Fact’s current and past editors and writers, and paper presentations and discussion panels about its extensive history, its relationship to the SF genre, its connection to fandom, and its role within the larger SF publishing industry.

We invite proposals for 15-20 minute paper presentations that explore or strongly relate to Analog Science Fiction and Fact. Please send a 250-word abstract with title, brief professional bio, and contact information to Jason Ellis (jellis@citytech.cuny.edu) by September 30, 2019. Topics with a connection to Analog Science Fiction and Fact might include but are certainly not limited to:

  • Histories of the magazine’s editors, writers, and relationship to other SF magazines.
  • Relationship of the magazine to the ongoing development of the SF genre.
  • Tropes, themes, and concepts in the magazine.
  • Issues of identity (culture, ethnicity, race, sex, and gender) in the magazine.
  • Writers of color in the magazine.
  • Women writers in the magazine.
  • Fandom and the magazine.
  • Visual studies of cover and interior artwork.
  • Hard SF and the magazine.
  • Interdisciplinary approaches to studying the magazine.
  • STEM and the Humanities bridged in the magazine.
  • Pedagogical approaches to teaching SF and/or STEM with the magazine.

This event is free and open to the public as space permits: an RSVP will be included with the program when announced on the Science Fiction at City Tech website (https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/sciencefictionatcitytech/).

This symposium is held in partnership with Analog Science Fiction and Fact and its publisher Penny Publications. It is hosted by the School of Arts and Sciences at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY.

The Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction is held in celebration of the City Tech Science Fiction Collection, an archival holding of over 600-linear feet of magazines, anthologies, novels, and scholarship. It is in the Archives and Special Collections of the Ursula C. Schwerin Library (Library Building, L543C, New York City College of Technology, 300 Jay Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201). More information about the collection and how to access it is available here: https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/sciencefictionatcitytech/librarycollection/.

Prof. Jason Ellis Talks About Science Fiction and Society on Neil deGrasse Tyson’s StarTalk Radio, May 30, 2019

Neil deGrasse Tyson and Jason Ellis.

Prof. Jason W. Ellis appeared on the May 30, 2019 episode of Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson’s StarTalk Radio program on “Creating Science Fiction, with Gale Anne Hurd.” Representing City Tech and the City Tech Science Fiction Collection, Prof. Ellis shared his expertise on science fiction and its cultural influence in a wide-ranging discussion connecting popular ideas about science and technology, SF’s influence on the popular imagination, and SF’s overlapping roles as entertainment, social commentary, and imaginative inspiration. Listen to the episode embedded below or available on the StarTalk website here.

The StarTalk Radio Website describes the episode as:

The Terminator, The Walking Dead, Aliens, and a lot more. Those are just some of the producing credits for this week’s main guest on StarTalk Radio. Neil deGrasse Tyson sits down with producer-extraordinaire Gale Anne Hurd to explore what it takes to bring great science fiction to life. Neil is joined by comic co-host Chuck Nice, science fiction expert Jason Ellis, PhD, and volcanologist Janine Krippner, PhD.

Because science fiction comes in many different forms and through many different avenues, there are many ways to get into it. You’ll learn how Gale’s childhood love of Marvel comic books and science fiction novels translated into a career “making what she likes to see.” She tells us how she served as a science fiction consultant to her local library to make sure their stock was up to date. Jason shares why not being able to see Star Wars in the theater sparked a rebellious love for science fiction.

You’ll hear about the history of science fiction and how it combines the STEM fields and the humanities. We debate if science fiction informs the future of every technological invention. You’ll find out about a lawsuit H.G Wells brought upon military figureheads because he claimed they stole his idea from one of his science fiction stories. Explore using science fiction as social commentary. Discover more about the famous kiss between Captain Kirk and Lt. Uhura, and how William Shatner and Nichelle Nichols purposely flubbed takes to make sure it stayed in the episode.

We take a deep dive into Dante’s Peak as volcanologist Janine Krippner stops by to share her take on the film. She explains why she thinks it’s still the best volcano movie even with its flaws. Gale gives us a behind-the-scenes look on how she fought for even more scientific realism to be in the film but encountered pushback from the studio. Neil also confronts Gale on the famous scientific inaccuracies of Armageddon. Chuck shares his love for The Expanse, we discuss Interstellar, and Neil tells us about his involvement in The Europa Report.

Lastly, you’ll also find out the differences between creating science fiction for television and film. According to Hugo Gernsback, the father of science fiction, sci-fi should be 75% romance and 25% science – is that still the goal? All that, plus, Jason caps it off with a story on how he was criticizing the film Sunshine right in front of director Danny Boyle’s family.

CFP, 200 Years of Interdisciplinarity Beginning with Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein: The Third Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction

Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, 1831 edition.

I’m pleased to announce the call for papers for the Third Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction!

Details about this year’s theme, the date of the symposium, and the deadline for paper proposals (Oct. 31, 2018) are all below.

200 Years of Interdisciplinarity Beginning with Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein: The Third Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction

 

Date and Time: Tuesday, November 27, 2018. 9:00am-5:00pm

Location: New York City College of Technology, 300 Jay St., Namm N119, Brooklyn, NY

 

“So much has been done, exclaimed the soul of Frankenstein—more, far more, will I achieve; treading in the steps already marked, I will pioneer a new way, explore unknown powers, and unfold to the world the deepest mysteries of creation.”

–Mary Shelley, Frankenstein (1831 edition)

“Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn’t stop to think if they should.”

–Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum), Jurassic Park (1993)

Ian Malcolm’s admonition above is as much a rebuke to the lasting echo of Victor Frankenstein’s ambition to accomplish “more, far more” as it is to park owner John Hammond’s explaining, “Our scientists have done things no one could ever do before.” Films like Jurassic Park and the kind of literature that came to be known as Science Fiction (SF) owe a tremendous debt to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus (1818). In addition to being an (if not the) inaugural work of SF, Mary Shelley builds her cautionary tale around interdisciplinary approaches to science, and she takes this innovation further by applying the humanities to question the nature of being in the world, the effects of science on society, and the ethical responsibilities of scientists. These are only some of Frankenstein’s groundbreaking insights, which as Brian Aldiss and David Wingrove observe in Trillion Year Spree (1986), “is marvellously good and inexhaustible in its interest” (20). The many dimensions of interdisciplinarity in Frankenstein and the SF that followed are the focus of the Third Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium.

In this special anniversary year of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, join us for a one-day symposium discussing interdisciplinarity and SF. Continuing conversations began in the earlier symposia, we seek to investigate SF’s power as an extrapolating art form with interdisciplinarity at its core, including interdisciplinarity within STEM fields and the interdisciplinary synergy of STEM and the humanities.

We invite presentations of 15-20 minutes on SF and interdisciplinarity. Papers on or connected to Frankenstein are particularly encouraged. Possible presentation topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and interdisciplinarity (focusing on research questions or teaching approaches)
  • Explorations of interdisciplinary ideas, approaches, and themes in SF (or what disciplinary boundaries does SF bridge)
  • SF as an interdisciplinary teaching tool (or what SF have you used or want to use in your classes to achieve interdisciplinary outcomes)
  • SF’s interdisciplinary imaginative functions (or Gedankenexperiment, considering ethical issues, unintended consequences, or unexpected breakthroughs)
  • Studying SF through an interdisciplinary lens (or combining otherwise discipline-bound approaches to uncover new meanings)
  • Bridging STEM and the humanities via SF (or SF as an interdisciplinary cultural work that embraces STEAM—Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Mathematics)
  • SF and identity (or how interdisciplinarity in SF reveals, supports, or explores issues of identity, culture, sex, gender, and race)
  • SF and place (or how SF’s settings are interdisciplinary, or where it is written fosters its interdisciplinarity)
  • Interdisciplinarity and archival work in SF collections (or making the City Tech Science Fiction Collection work for faculty, students, and researchers across disciplines)

Please send your abstract (no more than 250 words), brief bio, and contact information to Jason Ellis (jellis@citytech.cuny.edu) by Oct. 31, 2018.

The program will be announced by Nov. 12, 2018 on the Science Fiction at City Tech website here: https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/sciencefictionatcitytech/.

Hosted by the School of Arts and Sciences at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY.

The Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction is held in celebration of the City Tech Science Fiction Collection, an archival holding of over 600-linear feet of magazines, anthologies, novels, and scholarship. It is located in the Archives and Special Collections of the Ursula C. Schwerin Library (Library Building, L543C, New York City College of Technology, 300 Jay Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201). More information about the collection and how to access it is available here: https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/sciencefictionatcitytech/librarycollection/.

Prof. Aaron Barlow Donates Philip K. Dick Books to the City Tech Science Fiction Collection

Barlow

Prof. Aaron Barlow donated a considerable collection of Philip K. Dick novels, anthologies, and scholarship to the City Tech Science Fiction Collection on 22 March 2018.

At a glance, the 124-item donation includes all of Dick’s Science Fiction and posthumously published mainstream fiction. Additionally, the donation includes a lot of PKD research and criticism.

Some of the standout items donated include:

  • Philip K. Dick’s Underwood Miller 5-Volume, Boxed Set of Collected Short Stories (Vol. 1, Beyond Lies the Wub; Vol. 2, Second Variety; Vol. 3, The Father-Thing; Vol. 4, The Days of Perky Pat; and Vol. 5, The Little Black Box)
  • Philip K. Dick’s Gregg Press Publications (Eye in the Sky, Vulcan’s Hammer, The Zap Gun, The World Jones Made, and The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch)
  • Philip K. Dick’s Gollancz Edition of Galactic Pot-Healer
  • Philip K. Dick’s Ziesing Edition of The Dark Haired Girl
  • Lawrence Sutin’s In Pursuit of VALIS: Selections from the Exegesis
  • Gregg Rickman’s To the High Castle: Philip K. Dick, A Life 1928-1962
  • Gregg Rickman’s Philip K. Dick In His Own Words
  • Gregg Rickman’s Philip K. Dick: The Last Testament
  • Paul William’s Only Apparently Real
  • Patricia Warrick’s Mind in Motion: The Fiction of Philip K. Dick
  • Patricia Warrick and Martin Greenberg’s Robots, Androids, and Mechanical Oddieis: The Science Fiction of Philip K. Dick

Special Issue on Star Wars: The Force Awakens Published in NANO: New American Notes Online

Star Wars collage

Special Issue Co-Editors Jason W. Ellis and Sean Scanlan (both in City Tech’s Department of English) are pleased to announce the publication of NANO: New American Notes Online issue 12 on Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Narrative, Characters, Media, and Event. Focusing on the transmedia aspects of the continuation of the Star Wars film saga following Lucasfilm’s acquisition by Disney, this issue’s contributors explore how transmedia storytelling is leveraged in different aspects of fanfiction, promoting ideologies of global capitalism, and reconfigures Joseph Campbell’s hero myth. Also, we are honored to present an interview with Cass R. Sunstein, author of The World According to Star Wars. Now that The Last Jedi is in theaters, there is much more to be said on the issues these contributors debate. Follow the link below to read the current issue.

https://nanocrit.com/issues/issue12

NANO Issue 12: Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Narrative, Characters, Media, and Event

– Editor’s Introduction for NANO Special Issue 12: Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Narrative, Characters, Media, and Event by Jason W. Ellis and Sean Scanlan

– Welcoming the Dark Side?: Exploring Whitelash and Actual Space Nazis in TFA Fanfiction by Cait Coker and Karen Viars

– Poe Dameron Hurts So Prettily: How Fandom Negotiates with Transmedia Characterization by Chera Kee

– Interpellation by the Force: Biopolitical Cultural Apparatuses in The Force Awakens by Simon Orpana

– The Force Awakens: The Individualistic and Contemporary Heroine by Payal Doctor

– An Interview with Cass R. Sunstein: Author of The World According to Star Wars by Jason W. Ellis and Sean Scanlan

 

NANO: New American Notes Online is an interdisciplinary academic journal. Our goal is to invigorate humanities discourse by publishing brief peer-reviewed reports with a fast turnaround enabled by digital technologies.

 

Currently open NANO calls for papers include:

– Issue 13: Special Issue on The Anthropocene, Guest Editors: Kyle Wiggins and Brandon Krieg

Deadline: January 12, 2018

– Issue 14: Special Issue: Captivity Narratives Then and Now: Gender, Race, and the Captive in 20th and 21st American Literature and Culture, Guest Editors: Megan Behrent and Rebecca Devers

Deadline: May 15, 2018

Visit https://nanocrit.com/Submissions for details and instructions for submitting your writing.

Call for Papers: Extrapolation, Interdisciplinarity, and Learning: The Second Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction [Updated: Keynote Speaker, Samuel R. Delany]

Extrapolation, Interdisciplinarity, and Learning: The Second Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction

 

Date:               Wednesday, December 6, 2017

 

Location:         New York City College of Technology, 300 Jay St., Namm N119,

Brooklyn, NY

 

Keynote Speaker: Samuel R. Delany

 

            Knowledge is indivisible. When people grow wise in one direction, they are sure to make it easier for themselves to grow wise in other directions as well. On the other hand, when they split up knowledge, concentrate on their own field, and scorn and ignore other fields, they grow less wise—even in their own field.

How often people speak of art and science as though they were two entirely different things, with no interconnection. . . . That is all wrong. . . . If we go through the history of human advance, we find that there are many places where art and science intermingled and where an advance in one was impossible without an advance in the other.

–Isaac Asimov, A Roving Mind (1983)

 

Over twenty years after C. P. Snow published The Two Cultures, the unparalleled writer, scientist, and educator Isaac Asimov defends the “interconnection” between the sciences and the arts. In fact, he demonstrates the importance of interdisciplinarity—both within STEM fields as well as between STEM and the humanities—through his unsurpassed 500+ books ranging from Biblical scholarship to biochemistry, and science to science fiction. He shows how disciplines inform and strengthen one another to create greater knowledge and wisdom, which in turn leads to greater understanding and new insights. While significant strides have been made in promoting interdisciplinarity, Asimov’s defense continues to echo today.

 

Join us for a one-day symposium in the spirit of Asimov’s defense by exploring interdisciplinarity through the lens of science fiction—a mediating ‘third culture’ (borrowing Snow’s term) that combines the sciences and the humanities to extrapolate new worlds while reflecting on our own. This symposium aims to explore science fiction as an interdisciplinary literary form, a tool for teaching interdisciplinarity, and a cultural art form benefiting from interdisciplinary research approaches.

 

We invite presentations of 15-20 minutes on SF and interdisciplinarity. Possible presentation topics include, but are not limited to:

 

  • Explorations of interdisciplinary ideas, approaches, and themes in SF (or what disciplinary boundaries does SF bridge)
  • SF as an interdisciplinary teaching tool (or what SF have you used or want to use in your classes to achieve interdisciplinary outcomes)
  • SF’s interdisciplinary imaginative functions (or Gedankenexperiment, considering ethical issues, unintended consequences, or unexpected breakthroughs)
  • Studying SF through an interdisciplinary lens (or combining otherwise discipline-bound approaches to uncover new meanings)
  • Bridging STEM and the humanities via SF (or SF as an interdisciplinary cultural work that embraces STEAM—Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Mathematics)
  • SF and place (or how SF’s settings are interdisciplinary, or where it is written fosters its interdisciplinarity)
  • Interdisciplinarity and archival work in SF collections (or making the City Tech Science Fiction Collection work for faculty, students, and researchers across disciplines)

 

Please send your abstract (no more than 250 words), brief bio, and contact information to Jason Ellis (jellis@citytech.cuny.edu) by Oct. 31, 2017.

 

The program will be announced by Nov. 15, 2017 on the Science Fiction at City Tech website here: https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/sciencefictionatcitytech/.

 

Hosted by the School of Arts and Sciences at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY.

 

The annual Symposium on Science Fiction is held in celebration of the City Tech Science Fiction Collection, an archival holding of over 600-linear feet of magazines, anthologies, novels, and scholarship. It is located in the Archives and Special Collections of the Ursula C. Schwerin Library (Atrium Building, A543C, New York City College of Technology, 300 Jay Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201). More information about the collection and how to access it is available here: https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/sciencefictionatcitytech/librarycollection/.

CFP: Symposium on Amazing Stories: Inspiration, Learning, and Adventure in Science Fiction (Date Updated)

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Symposium on Amazing Stories: Inspiration, Learning, and Adventure in Science Fiction

Date: Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016, 9:00AM-5:00PM Wednesday, November 30, 2016, 9:00AM-5:00PM

Location: New York City College of Technology, 300 Jay St., Namm N119

“By ‘scientifiction’ I mean the Jules Verne, H. G. Wells and Edgar Allan Poe type of story—a charming romance intermingled with scientific fact and prophetic vision … Not only do these amazing tales make tremendously interesting reading—they are always instructive.”
-Hugo Gernsback, 1926.

When the widely recognized “Father of Science Fiction,” Hugo Gernsback first coined the term that captured the essence of the genre we now call science fiction (SF), he envisioned SF as a new form of literature that inspired with prophecy, taught with scientific and technical facts, and engaged with adventure. These traits unique to SF have launched many of its readers on trajectories into the STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) fields.

Join us for a one-day symposium exploring SF as a medium for engaging imagination, a means for exploring STEM/STEAM fields, and an instrument for discovering interdisciplinary connections, and also celebrating the new City Tech Science Fiction Collection held in the Archives and Special Collections of the Ursula C. Schwerin Library.

We invite presentations of 10-15 minutes on SF and how it fulfills learning, inspiration, and fun in STEAM-focused environments. Possible presentation topics include, but are not limited to:

• SF inspired STEM careers (or what SF inspired you to enter your field?)
• SF as a teaching tool (or what SF have you used or want to use in your classes?)
• SF’s imaginative functions (or Gedankenexperiment, considering ethical issues and unintended consequences, visualizing the influence of science and technology on society)
• Bridging STEM and the humanities via SF (or SF as an interdisciplinary cultural work that embraces STEAM)
• SF and place (or SF’s deep roots in Brooklyn and New York City)
• The fun and learning in archival work in SF collections (or making the City Tech Science Fiction Collection work for faculty, students, and researchers)

Please send a 100-word abstract, brief bio, and contact information to Jason Ellis (jellis at citytech.cuny.edu) by Oct. 31, 2016. Schedule will be announced Nov.15, 2016.

Organizing Committee: Jason Ellis (Chair), Aaron Barlow, Jill Belli, and Mary Nilles.

Hosted by the School of Arts and Sciences at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY.

Call for Papers: NANO New American Notes Online Issue 12 on Star Wars: The Force Awakens

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NANO New American Notes Online is an online, peer-reviewed journal edited by Prof. Sean Scanlan and supported by the New York City College of Technology, CUNY. Prof. Jason Ellis is on NANO’s editorial board. Together with their colleague Prof. Alan Lovegreen of Orange Coast College, they are co-editing an upcoming special issue focused on Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Their call for papers is included below and the original CFP is available on the NANO website.

Call for Papers: NANO New American Notes Online Issue 12 on Star Wars: The Force Awakens

 

Deadline: February 1, 2017

 

Special Issue: Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Narrative, Characters, Media, and Event

 

Guest Editors: Jason W. Ellis, Alan Lovegreen, and Sean Scanlan

 

This thing [Star Wars] communicates. It is in a language that is talking to young people today, and that’s marvelous.

–Joseph Campbell in conversation with Bill Moyers, The Power of Myth (1988)

 

There are certainly many more themes in The Force Awakens that speak to us, and help us to learn more about these characters and what makes them tick.

–Dan Zehr, “Studying Skywalkers” column on starwars.com (May 18, 2016)

 

It is the aim of this special issue of NANO to address the significance of the latest installment of Star Wars by exploring its narrative, characters, media, and event. Across nearly four decades, audiences spanning generations have experienced Star Wars through films, television programs, books, video games, special events such as the annual “celebrations,” and other storytelling media, including action figures and LEGO. Following Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm, George Lucas’ production company, audiences experienced a new transmedia event and a continuation of the old stories with the release of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens in 2015. Joseph Campbell’s earlier observations about the first film raises new questions that deserve to be answered about the latest: How does this new film communicate? What language does it use? And, to whom is it speaking?

 

One way to approach these issues of communication and language is through the convergence of the film’s narrative and characters, especially how the transmission of this convergence gets revealed through a variety of media as an event. For example, how does the film’s narrative respond to, continue, and challenge those that it follows? And what about the cast of characters—some returning and some new? What do these characters and their performance of the narrative have to say about the here-and-now as well as the past? Of course, the narrative is told through media, which includes different film technologies, digital distribution, DVD and Blu-Ray discs, websites, video games, and apps. And stepping back for a larger perspective, the release of the film and its transmedia supporting elements inform The Force Awakens as an event, in part orchestrated by Disney/Lucasfilm, and in part connected to contemporary events, including #oscarssowhite, #womeninfilm, and #paygap. Furthermore, how does its event(s) relate to those of the past, including specifically those centered on the release of the earlier films and subsequent events awakening fans’ nostalgic enthusiasm. The Force Awakens’ considerable box office performance and tie-in successes signal how significant this film (and its progenitors) is, and it is the aim of this special issue to explore the promise and pitfalls of its cultural influence.

 

This issue welcomes multimodal essays up to 4,000 words (excluding works cited) exploring topics relating to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, including but not limited to the following:

 

* transmedia storytelling and The Force Awakens (including “Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens” publications, such as Chuck Wendig’s novel, Star Wars: Aftermath, and comic books Star Wars: Shattered Empire and Star Wars: Poe Dameron

* media transformation and adaptation (e.g., comparing the film with Alan Dean Foster’s novelization)

* materiality and The Force Awakens (e.g., LEGO, play, and collecting)

* Star Wars fandom and cosplay

* Star Wars reference materials and publications

* starwars.com and the official Star Wars app

* Star Wars videogames including LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars Battlefront, and the now defunct Disney Infinity tie-ins

* Jakku Spy VR experience

* Star Wars Celebration and ComicCon special events

* social and political movements’ coinciding/connecting with The Force Awakens

* the hero’s journey and the heroes’ journeys

* movement and storytelling

* vehicles as characters

* nostalgia and familiarity

* inclusive casting/characters

* droids and aliens

* hidden bodies/cgi characters (e.g., Maz Kanata/ Lupita Nyong’o and Captain Phasma/Gwendoline Christie)

* race and gender in The Force Awakens

* terrorism, insurgency, war, and militarism

* surveillance

 

Direct questions to the Special Issue co-editors: Jason W. Ellis [jellis@citytech.cuny.edu], Alan Lovegreen [alanlovegreen@yahoo.com], and Sean Scanlan [sscanlan@citytech.cuny.edu].

 

NANO is a multimodal journal. Therefore, we encourage submissions that include images, sound, or video in support of a written argument. These multimodal components may consist of objects and data sets that go beyond traditional media. The multimodal components of the essay must be owned or licensed by the author, come from the public domain, or fall within reasonable fair use (see Stanford University Libraries’ Copyright & Fair Use site, http://fairuse.stanford.edu/overview/fair-use/ and the U.S. Copyright Office’s Fair Use site, http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl102.html for more information. NANO’s Fair Use Statement is available on its submission page, http://www.nanocrit.com/submissions-information/).

 

For questions about video, audio, or image usage, please contact NANO: editornano@citytech.cuny.edu.

 

NANO uses modified MLA (Modern Language Association) formatting and style.

 

Submission style guidelines: http://www.nanocrit.com/submissions-information/style-guide-nano/

 

Submission form: http://www.nanocrit.com/submissions-information/submission-form-page-nano1

 

Keywords and abstract: Each author is asked to submit 5 keywords and a 150-word abstract to accompany their submission.

 

Schedule: Deadlines concerning the special issue to be published in NANO:

 

* Submission deadline: February 1, 2017

* Complete comments and peer review June 2017

* Pre-production begins August 2017

 

We look forward to receiving your contributions.