Saturday, February 5, 2011

Margaret Atwood Annoys Me

So I stumbled across a review of Margaret Atwood's new book at Fantasy Literature. Atwood is most famous for her novel The Handmaid's Tale, a dystopian story of a future in which women are completely subjugated by a culture dominated by Christian fundamentalism. Her newest novel can likewise be considered science fiction, unless you ask Ms. Atwood:

What could be more “SFF” than Oryx and Crake?
Quite a lot, according to Margaret Atwood, who prefers to describe her novel as “speculative fiction” rather than “science fiction.” In interviews promoting Oryx and Crake, Atwood explained that everything that takes place in Oryx and Crake is based on trends that we can see today, as opposed to distant planets that have an allegorical connection to our lives.
Nothing annoys me more than "mainstream" authors who try to hem and haw about how their work is not science fiction or fantasy in any way, shape, or form. Apparently, Atwood is unaware that a lot of science fiction takes place on a future Earth instead of on "distant planets." But "literary" authors must demonstrate how grown-up they are by completely rejecting the cool books they grew up with even while writing in the same genre

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