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Call for Papers: Race and Science Fiction: The Fifth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium

Race and Science Fiction: The Fifth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium

Date and Time: November 19, 2020, 9:00AM-5:00PM

Location: Online, Sponsored by the School of Arts and Sciences at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY.

Organizers: Wanett Clyde, Jason W. Ellis, and A. Lavelle Porter

 

“People who say change is impossible are usually pretty happy with things just as they are.” –N. K. Jemisin, The City We Became

Science Fiction, on a fundamental level, is always about the here-and-now in which it is produced, because it is from that point the author extrapolates an imagined future or alternate reality. The long and hard fight for civil rights and the latest unfolding of that struggle in the Black Lives Matter movement and its alliances calls on us to recognize the powerful possibilities within Science Fiction to imagine change, especially those promoting social justice and equality by writers of color and Afrofuturists, as well as reckon with the field’s patterns of racism, resistance to inclusion, and lack of representation.

The Fifth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium aims to explore the possibilities for change through the myriad connections between Race and Science Fiction with scholarly presentations, readings by authors, and engaging discussion. It is our goal to foster conversations that question, critique, or discuss SF as it relates to Race.

We invite proposals for 10-20 minute scholarly paper presentations, panel discussions, or author readings related to the topic of race and Science Fiction. Please send a 250-word abstract with title, brief professional bio, and contact information to Jason Ellis (jellis@citytech.cuny.edu) by September 30, 2020. Topics with a connection to race and Science Fiction might include but are certainly not limited to:

  • Histories of race and Science Fiction.
  • Representation of race in Science Fiction.
  • Representation of writers of color in the Science Fiction field.
  • Inclusion or exclusion of readers and fans due to race.
  • Issues of identity, including race, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, culture, etc.
  • Subgenres and movements, such as Afrofuturism, Black science fiction, Indigenous Futurism, and speculative fiction by writers of color.
  • Race, Science Fiction, and Music, such as Sun Ra, George Clinton, Janelle Monáe, and Outkast.
  • Race and Comic Books
  • Engagement with civil rights movements in Science Fiction explicitly or metaphorically.
  • Pedagogical approaches to teaching race and Science Fiction or teaching about race with Science Fiction.

Due to the uncertainty in the months ahead, the symposium will be held online using a combination of pre-recorded video lectures hosted on the web and real-time interactive discussion on the scheduled day of the symposium using widely available video conferencing software.

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/). Free registration will be required for participation.

The event is sponsored 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/.

Videos from the Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium, An Astounding 90 Years of Analog Science Fiction and Fact

4th Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium

Photo by Yimei Han.

The Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium on “An Astounding 90 Years of Analog Science Fiction and Fact” was held on December 12, 2019 at the New York City College of Technology in downtown Brooklyn, New York.

It was a great success! We had over 100 attendees comprised of scholars, writers, editors, fans, and City Tech students and faculty. The partnership between Analog Science Fiction and Fact and City Tech helped the event grow and reach new audiences, and the combination of scholarly presentations, an editors’ roundtable, and writers events–a writers’ roundtable and the keynote by SF writer Mike Flynn made the event speak in powerful and engaging ways to the many different attendees.

For folks who couldn’t make it to the symposium, we’re carrying on the conversation asynchronously online by making videos of each session and Q&A available on YouTube. Wherever you might talk about the symposium, please use these hashtags to help us engage and track the ongoing discussion: #CityTechSF and #AnalogSF90th.

If you’d like to watch the symposium videos in one go, you can find the complete playlist on YouTube here.

Or, you can watch the individual sessions embedded below:

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


Teaching with SF Collections

Moderator: Lucas Kwong

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

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


Editors Panel

Moderator:      Frank Wu

Panelists:

Stanley Schmidt

Trevor Quachri

Emily Hockaday


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


Writers Panel

Moderator:      Emily Hockaday

Panelists:

Phoebe Barton

Leah Cypess

Jay Werkheiser

Alison Wilgus

Frank Wu


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


Keynote Address by Mike Flynn

Introduction:   Trevor Quachri

 

Student Profile of Julie Bradford, Artist and Designer of the Third and Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium Posters

Julie Bradford, a Graphic Design Intern in City Tech’s Faculty Commons, designed the posters for this year’s and last year’s Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium. Prof. Jason Ellis asked her the following questions about the process and tools that she uses to create her art, and he asked her about her relationship to Science Fiction in general.

(1) Julie, you designed the posters for the third and fourth City Tech Science Fiction Symposia. Considering the Frankenstein-themed poster for last year’s symposium, what inspired you to make the poster artwork for the third symposium? What was your design process like to create this poster recognizing the 200th anniversary of Mary Shelley’s groundbreaking novel?

Third Annual Symposium Poster

The Third Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction poster designed by Julie Bradford.

The main inspiration came from wanting to present a scene everyone familiar with Dr. Frankenstein’s monster know about: the moment he comes to life. I spent some time analyzing the good Doctor’s lab from the 1931 film and sketching up a few designs that would best convey the scene. I wanted to use as few colors as possible with a dark overtone to really set that feeling of terror.

(2) This year, you designed a very different kind of poster for the 4th Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium celebrating the 90th anniversary of Analog Science Fiction and Fact magazine. What inspired you to design this poster? What was your design process like on this poster? Did this poster encourage your development as an artist, and if so, how? What, if any, movies, video games, music, or stories provide you with ideas that you incorporated and transformed into this poster?

I had ZERO ideas even though I was excited to design another poster for an anniversary event! All I knew was wanting the poster to resemble an Analog cover. The concept ideas didn’t start to formulate until after I received all the Analog references from you. After reading a few of the provided works, mocking up a few designs and going back-and-forth with you, the final concept came through— which is what we see now! This poster was very different from what I made for last year’s symposium, and even my own current works. The concept pushed me to try new things, one of them was to tell a visual story in one go, no panels with dialogue to help.

Fourth City Tech Science Fiction Symposium Poster by Julie Bradford.

The Fourth City Tech Science Fiction Symposium Poster by Julie Bradford.

(3) More generally, what is your design workflow? From generating ideas to drafting to finalizing, how do you create your art and what tools do you use?

First is always the research, from any physical to digital items, movies, shows, written works, etc. What helps the most is talking the idea over with others, especially those who asked for the poster be made. I start off with analog tools: pencil and paper. Once the sketch is approved and solid, I move onto digital with my trusty iPad and the Procreate app. Once the illustration is complete, I import it over to Illustrator where the overall design has been laid out.

(4) Turning to thinking about your relationship to the tools that you use as an artist, do you think of yourself as a cyborg–a being whose existence is mediated by technology? How about being a cyborg in a larger sense thanks to modern digital technologies, such as smartphones, email, social media, streaming, etc.?

Funnily enough, I was thinking of this concept recently about how dependent I am on my digital tools, from my tablet to my desktop to even my video game consoles. There was once a time when I needed none of that but now I can’t imagine going a day without using them. I do not think of myself as a cyborg per se— at least not like Cyborg from DC comics. Perhaps more of a cyborg-lite?

(5) Finally, as a science fiction fan, what do you recommend folks check out? It can be anything SF-related: movies, video games, tv shows, literature, music, apps, etc.

BLACK MIRROR! And the original Twilight Zone. Classics are classics for a reason!


Julie Bradford is a BFA in Communication Design Management student at City Tech who has a strong background in illustration. When she is not distracted by cute and shiny things or busy drawing up comic adventures with her Pokemon Go buddies, she is focused on her schoolwork and catching up on her shows. While completing her BFA, she is working as a graphic design intern for City Tech’s Faculty Commons. See her in-progress work online here: https://www.instagram.com/_saltyjules/.

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!

Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium Poster by Julie Bradford.

Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium Poster by Julie Bradford.

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

Moderator: Lucas Kwong

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

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.

 

Julie Bradford designed the third and fourth City Tech Science Fiction Symposium poster and program cover. She is a BFA in Communication Design Management student at City Tech who has a strong background in illustration. When she is not distracted by cute and shiny things or busy drawing up comic adventures with her Pokemon Go buddies, she is focused on her schoolwork and catching up on her shows. While completing her BFA, she is working as a graphic design intern for City Tech’s Faculty Commons. See her in-progress work online here: https://www.instagram.com/_saltyjules/.

 

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.

 

Lucas Kwong is an assistant professor of English at New York City College of Technology. His scholarship on fantastic fiction, religion, and colonialism has been published in Victorian Literature and Culture, Religion and Literature, and Journal of Narrative Theory.  He also serves as the assistant editor for New American Notes Online, an online interdisciplinary scholarly journal, and as editor for City Tech Writer, a journal of student writing. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife.

 

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.

Meeting at the Analog Science Fiction and Fact Offices to Discuss 4th Annual Symposium

Pictured L to R: Emily Hockaday, Jason Ellis, and Trevor Quachri.On October 8, 2019, Prof. Jason Ellis met with Analog Science Fiction and Fact editor Trevor Quachri (pictured right) and managing editor Emily Hockaday (pictured left) to discuss the program for the upcoming  Fourth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium celebrating “An Astounding 90 Years of Analog Science Fiction and Fact.” Analog Science Fiction and Fact partnered with Science Fiction at City Tech to coordinate on speakers and organize the programming. The tentative schedule and RSVP link for the symposium will be posted soon!

 

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/.

Videos of Presentations and Discussions from the Third Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium

Students at Third Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium.

The Third Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium was an amazing success! Here are videos from the symposium’s presentations and discussions from Nov. 27, 2018. Watch them all on YouTube via this playlist, or watch them as embedded videos below.


9:00am-9:20am
Continental Breakfast and Opening Remarks
Location: Academic Complex A105
Justin Vazquez-Poritz, Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, New York City College of Technology
Jason W. Ellis, New York City College of Technology


9:20am-10:35am
Session 1: Affect and Experimentation
Location: Academic Complex A105
Moderator: Jason W. Ellis
Leigh Gold, “The Legacy of Frankenstein: Science, Mourning, and the Ethics of Experimentation”
Lucas Kwong, “The Island Of Dr. Moreau, Fantastic Ambivalence, and the Victorian “Science Of Religion”
Robert Lestón, “Between Intervals: A Soundscape for all Us Monsters”


10:45am-12:00am
Session 2: Identity and Genre
Location: Academic Complex A105
Moderator: Jill Belli
Anastasia Klimchynskaya, “Frankenstein, Or, the Modern Fantastic: Rationalizing Wonder and the Birth of Science Fiction”
Paul Levinson, “Golem, Frankenstein, and Westworld”
Joy Sanchez-Taylor, “Genetic Engineering and non-Western Modernity in Paolo Bacigalupi’s The Windup Girl and Larissa Lai’s Salt Fish Girl”


1:15pm-2:30pm
Session 3: American Culture and Media
Location: Academic Complex A105
Moderator: A. Lavelle Porter
Aaron Barlow, “‘Fraunkensteen’: What’s No Longer Scary Becomes Funny or, How American Popular Culture Appropriates Art and Expands the Commons”
Marleen S. Barr, “Trumppunk Or Science Fiction Resists the Monster Inhabiting the White House”
Sharon Packer, “Jessica Jones (Superhero), Women & Alcohol Use Disorders”


2:40pm-3:40pm
Student Round Table: “Shaping the Future: A Student Roundtable on Octavia Butler’s Parable of the Sower”
Location: Academic Complex A105
Moderator: A. Lavelle Porter
Panelists: Zawad Ahmed
Marvin Blain
Kartikye Ghai
Devinnesha Ryan


4:00pm-4:50pm
Frankenstein Panel: Mary Shelley’s Novel’s Influence on Scientists and Technologists
Location: Academic Complex A105
Moderator: Justin Vazquez-Poritz
Panelists:
Heidi Boisvert, Entertainment Technology Department
Robert MacDougall, Social Sciences Department
Ashwin Satyanarayana, Computer Systems Technology Department
Jeremy Seto, Biological Sciences Department


5:00pm-6:00pm
Closing and Tour of the City Tech Science Fiction Collection
Location: City Tech Library L543
Remarks by Jason W. Ellis

Third Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction, Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2018, 9:00am-6:00pm, Academic Complex A105

Third Annual Symposium Poster

Third Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction, Poster Designed by Julie Bradford.

Download the program as a PDF here.

The Third Annual City Tech Symposium on Science Fiction

200 Years of Interdisciplinarity Beginning with Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2018, 9:00am-6:00pm

New York City College of Technology, CUNY
Academic Complex, Room A105
285 Jay St., Brooklyn, NY 11201

Organizing Committee: Jill Belli, Jason W. Ellis, Leigh Gold, Lucas Kwong, Robert Lestón, and A. Lavelle Porter

Hosted by the School of Arts and Sciences.

Event hashtag: #CityTechSF


The kind of literature that came to be known as Science Fiction (SF) owes 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.


Schedule

9:00am-9:20am
Continental Breakfast and Opening Remarks
Location: Academic Complex A105
Justin Vazquez-Poritz, Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, New York City College of Technology
Jason W. Ellis, New York City College of Technology

9:20am-10:35am
Session 1: Affect and Experimentation
Location: Academic Complex A105
Moderator: Jason W. Ellis
Leigh Gold, “The Legacy of Frankenstein: Science, Mourning, and the Ethics of Experimentation”
Lucas Kwong, “The Island Of Dr. Moreau, Fantastic Ambivalence, and the Victorian “Science Of Religion”
Robert Lestón, “Between Intervals: A Soundscape for all Us Monsters”

10:35am-10:45am
Break

10:45am-12:00am
Session 2: Identity and Genre
Location: Academic Complex A105
Moderator: Jill Belli
Anastasia Klimchynskaya, “Frankenstein, Or, the Modern Fantastic: Rationalizing Wonder and the Birth of Science Fiction”
Paul Levinson, “Golem, Frankenstein, and Westworld”
Joy Sanchez-Taylor, “Genetic Engineering and non-Western Modernity in Paolo Bacigalupi’s The Windup Girl and Larissa Lai’s Salt Fish Girl”

12:00am-1:15pm
Lunch

1:15pm-2:30pm
Session 3: American Culture and Media
Location: Academic Complex A105
Moderator: A. Lavelle Porter
Aaron Barlow, “‘Fraunkensteen’: What’s No Longer Scary Becomes Funny or, How American Popular Culture Appropriates Art and Expands the Commons”
Marleen S. Barr, “Trumppunk Or Science Fiction Resists the Monster Inhabiting the White House”
Sharon Packer, “Jessica Jones (Superhero), Women & Alcohol Use Disorders”

2:30pm-2:40pm
Break

2:40pm-3:40pm
Student Round Table: “Shaping the Future: A Student Roundtable on Octavia Butler’s Parable of the Sower”
Location: Academic Complex A105
Moderator: A. Lavelle Porter
Panelists: Zawad Ahmed
Marvin Blain
Kartikye Ghai
Devinnesha Ryan

3:40pm-3:50pm
Break

4:00pm-4:50pm
Frankenstein Panel: Mary Shelley’s Novel’s Influence on Scientists and Technologists
Location: Academic Complex A105
Moderator: Justin Vazquez-Poritz
Panelists:
Heidi Boisvert, Entertainment Technology Department
Robert MacDougall, Social Sciences Department
Ashwin Satyanarayana, Computer Systems Technology Department
Jeremy Seto, Biological Sciences Department

4:50pm-5:00pm
Break/Relocate to Library

5:00pm-6:00pm
Closing and Tour of the City Tech Science Fiction Collection
Location: City Tech Library L543
Remarks by Jason W. Ellis


Symposium Participants & Contributors

Aaron Barlow teaches English at New York City College of Technology (CUNY).

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.

Jill Belli, Ph.D., is Associate Professor of English and Co-Director of the OpenLab, the college’s open-source digital platform for teaching, learning, and collaborating. Jill teaches and researches utopian studies and science fiction, and she serves on the Steering Committee and as the web developer for the Society for Utopian Studies. She is currently working on a book about happiness and well-being in education.

Julie Bradford designed the symposium’s Frankenstein-themed poster. She is a BFA in Communication Design Management student at City Tech who has a strong background in illustration. When she is not distracted by cute and shiny things or busy drawing up comic adventures with her Pokemon Go buddies, she is focused on her schoolwork and catching up on her shows. While completing her BFA, she is working as a graphic design intern for City Tech’s Faculty Commons. Her online portfolio is available here: www.behance.net/
juliebradf2a85.

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. Recently, he co-edited a special issue of New American Notes Online (NANO) on Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

Leigh Dara Gold received her doctorate in German Literature in 2011 from New York University. She teaches Introduction to Poetry and English 1121 at New York City College of Technology, and Ancient Literature and Composition at Borough of Manhattan Community College. Her current research interests include science fiction’s role in the classroom, research on Ursula K. Le Guin, and connections between dance, literature, and philosophy.

Anastasia Klimchynskaya is a doctoral candidate at the University of Pennsylvania. She is currently working on a dissertation on the emergence of science fiction in the 19th century, which she situates in the context of earlier genres as well as the period’s discourses around scientific and technological novelty. Her other intellectual interests include the mechanisms through which science fiction becomes science fact, literature as political engagement, and the cultural history of AI. She is also on the organizing committee of the Philadelphia Science Fiction Conference (Philcon), and a peer reviewer for the Journal of Science Fiction.

Lucas Kwong is an assistant professor of English at New York City College of Technology, where he has recently served as the coordinator for the Literary Arts Festival Writing Competitions. His scholarship includes the article “Dracula’s Apologetics of Progress,” published in a 2016 issue of Victorian Literature and Culture, as well as a forthcoming article on H.P. Lovecraft’s “The Call of Cthulhu” for Journal of Narrative Theory. His current research project examines how late Victorian fantastic fiction reimagined the era’s fascination with religious difference. He also serves as the assistant editor for New American Notes Online (www.nanocrit.com) and City Tech Writer (openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/citytechwriter), a journal of student writing.

Robert Lestón’s research includes studies in the avant garde arts of sound, image, film, and continental philosophy as they apply to expanding the scope of rhetorical invention. His work has appeared in Itineration, Kairos, Configurations, Enculturation, Atlantic Journal of Communication, and other venues. He is also coauthor of Beyond the Blogosphere: Information and Its Children (2012) with Aaron Barlow.

Paul Levinson, PhD, is Professor of Communication & Media Studies at Fordham University in NYC. His science fiction novels include The Silk Code (winner of Locus Award for Best First Science Fiction Novel of 1999), Borrowed Tides (2001), The Consciousness Plague (2002), The Pixel Eye (2003), The Plot To Save Socrates (2006), Unburning Alexandria (2013), and Chronica (2014). His stories and novels have been nominated for Hugo, Nebula, Sturgeon, Edgar, Prometheus, and Audie Awards. His novelette “The Chronology Protection Case” was made into short movie, now on Amazon Prime. His nonfiction books, including The Soft Edge (1997), Digital McLuhan (1999), Realspace (2003), Cellphone (2004), New New Media (2009; 2nd edition, 2012), McLuhan in an Age of Social Media (2015), and Fake News in Real Context (2016), have been translated into twelve languages. He co-edited Touching the Face of the Cosmos: On the Intersection of Space Travel and Religion in 2016. He appears on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, the Discovery Channel, National Geographic, the History Channel, NPR, and numerous TV and radio programs. His 1972 LP, Twice Upon a Rhyme, was re-issued in 2010. He was President of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, 1998-2001. He reviews television in his InfiniteRegress.tv blog, and was listed in The Chronicle of Higher Education’s “Top 10 Academic Twitterers” in 2009.

Robert MacDougall is an Assistant Professor in Philosophy at City Tech.

Sharon Packer, MD is a physician and psychiatrist who is in private practice and is Assistant Clinical Professor at Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai. She is the author of several books that link science, psychiatry and the humanities, including Neuroscience in Science Fiction Film, Cinema’s Sinister Psychiatrists, Movies and the Modern Psyche, Superheroes & Superegos: the Minds behind the Masks; Dreams in Myth, Medicine & Movies. She edited two multi-volume books on Evil in American Popular Culture and Mental Illness in Popular Culture. She writes regular articles on “Why Psychiatrists are Physicians First” for Psychiatric Times.

A. Lavelle Porter is an Assistant Professor of English at New York City College of Technology. He holds a B.A. in history from Morehouse College and a Ph.D. in English from the CUNY Graduate Center. His writing has appeared in venues such as The GC Advocate, Callaloo, The New Inquiry, Poetry Foundation, and the African American Intellectual History Society. He is currently working on a book about representations of black higher education in popular culture.

Joy Sanchez-Taylor is an Associate Professor of English at LaGuardia Community College whose research specialty is science fiction and fantasy literature by authors of color. She has published articles in Science Fiction Studies, Extrapolation and The Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts. Currently, she is working on a book project titled Diverse Futures: Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Writers of Color.

Jeremy Seto is an Assistant Professor in Biological Sciences at City Tech.

Justin Vazquez-Poritz is the Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences at City Tech.


Special Thanks

Complementary magazines donated by Analog Science Fiction and Fact. For more information about the magazine and subscriptions, visit www.analogsf.com.

Complementary passes donated by The Morgan Library & Museum. Enjoy the exhibition It’s Alive! Frankenstein at 200 through January 27, 2019. For more information, visit www.themorgan.org.

Invaluable support from Dean Justin Vazquez-Poritz and Office Assistant Iva Williams.

Tremendous assistance from the Faculty Commons: Director Julia Jordan, Design Intern Julie Bradford, and the rest of the team.

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/.

Videos of 2nd Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium

Below are videos of the presentations made at the 2nd Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium on Extrapolation, Interdisciplinarity, and Learning held on Dec. 6, 2017. They are included in the order from the program with the last video being the very special keynote address by Samuel R. Delany. If you’d like to watch all these as a playlist on YouTube, follow this link.