Manifestos, Rants, and Polemics Log Out | Topics | Search
Moderators | Register | Edit Profile

Topics | Last Day | Last Week | Tree View | Search | User List | Help/Instructions | Program Credits Administration
Night Shade Message Boards » VanderMeer, Jeff » Manifestos, Rants, and Polemics « Previous Next »

Author Message
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Sunday, April 24, 2005 - 07:27 am:   

I've decided to start collecting/compiling manifestos, rants, and polemics from within the field. (Heck, I might even edit an anthology of them.) I'm especially interested in what's available online and what's not. Currently researching the following online:


New Wave manifestos
Century magazine's manifesto
Bruce Sterling's slipstream "manifesto"
Richard Grant's anti-Clarion, pro-Nabokov manifesto from SF Eye in the 1990s
Jonathan Lethem's "manifesto" about how SF/F sucks compared to mainstream
New Weird
Cyberpunk

I know there are more--like The Best of Crank had a kind of manifesto in it, I think. Then there are the Tangent editorials/rants. And, much more besides, I'm sure.

If you'd like to help out, just post links and ideas here.

Because it does strike me that we tend to have short memories and it might be useful to devote a webpage or something to links to them (unless such a thing exists) and summaries of those that aren't online.

JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Minz
Posted on Sunday, April 24, 2005 - 07:46 am:   

Don't forget Hal Duncan's recent In the Ghetto rant found on his blog, and linked from somewhere around here (actually, inspired as a response to a thread around here.) If you want to gather it as a serious standalone piece, it wouldn't take much to massage it into shape. I imagine Hal might be up for it.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Minz
Posted on Sunday, April 24, 2005 - 07:48 am:   

Is the Lethem avail online? It was orig a Village Voice piece, and Hartwell reprinted it in NYRSF.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

des
Posted on Sunday, April 24, 2005 - 10:13 am:   

Can I offer my own Manifesto of Nemonymity: that was posted here:
http://www.dowse.com/articles/A-CULTURE-WITH-NO-CLUTTER.html
before Nemo~1 was published in May 2001.

If I wrote something like this now, it would be different. But of course what people write in the past is written by their past quite different personage!

des
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Sunday, April 24, 2005 - 10:55 am:   

I dunno, Minz--still searching. Yeah--the Duncan definitely, and then there are the Rat Bastards' posts, Alan DeNiro's in particular, I think.

It may seem daft, but it might help stop a lot of senseless repetition and confusion if new drafters of manifestos had a good sense of everything that went before, rather than just some vague idea of what went before.

And I really like the idea of an entire book of manifestos, rants, and polemics. It could be called "Speaker's Corner: Rants, Polemics, Manifestos, & Mouth-Frothings". LOL! Then we'll goad Mr. Duncan into donning some crazy-ass outfit and drinking an ungodly amount of scotch, at which time we'll take his photo while he leaps over a table as he screams, "I hate the bloody Royal Family!". And that'll be the cover.

JeffV

JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

L. Timmel Duchamp
Posted on Sunday, April 24, 2005 - 04:09 pm:   

Here's the most famous rant in feminist sf history, Jeff: Jeanne Gomoll's "An Open Letter to Joanna Russ"

<http://www.geocities.com/athens/8720/letter.htm>.

Timmi Duchamp
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

John Klima
Posted on Sunday, April 24, 2005 - 07:22 pm:   

What about Truesdale claiming all the new writers are metrosexual?

JK
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

John Klima
Posted on Sunday, April 24, 2005 - 07:23 pm:   

I guess you have Truesdale covered in the Tangent editorials, sorry 'bout that.

JK
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

lester peterpan
Posted on Sunday, April 24, 2005 - 07:47 pm:   

Hi Jeff
You might want to check out the old Futurists' manifesto, just to see how it was done back in the day. It's a gem. Check it out - Founding of Futurism Just scroll down the page a bit. Note the part that starts "we will glorify war..." :-P
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

AnnaT
Posted on Monday, April 25, 2005 - 05:02 am:   

What's 'the field'?
Perhaps this falls within it?
'On Sincerity in Literature' by Vladimir Pomerantsev (1953)
http://www.sovlit.com/sincerity/

and this widely reported study?
'Fairy tales linked to violent relationships'
http://www.thepeninsulaqatar.com/Display_news.asp?section=World_News&subsection= United+Kingdom+%26+Europe&month=April2005&file=World_News200504231554.xml
and here:
http://news.scotsman.com/uk.cfm?id=432542005
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

neilw
Posted on Monday, April 25, 2005 - 05:53 am:   

"goad Mr. Duncan into donning some crazy-ass outfit and drinking an ungodly amount"

You really think goading would be necessary? Granted whisky might not be his first choice, but all the same...
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

al duncan
Posted on Monday, April 25, 2005 - 08:13 am:   

It would have to be absinthe. Scotch is for pussies.

And the correct phrase is "... bloody German sausage-sucking, prophria-ridden, inbred halfwit Royal Leeches!" But that's another rant entirely. One that involves the restoration of the time-honoured tradition of ritual regicide. (I'm a traditionalist, ye see. Give 'em a year and then execute them in a huge public spectacle. People talk about how we need the Windsor bint and her drivelling brood for the tourist trade, but fuck "Trooping The Colour"; think how many more tourists would flock to see Charlie being gutted or Wills flayed. I'm just trying to optimise our resources.)

So, well, yes, if it's froth-mouthed blathering madness ye want, then clearly I'm yer man. "In The Ghetto" could use some judicious tweaking, though, if I was going to put it forth anywhere else as anything other than shoot-first-think-later rantery. I noticed some Live Journal responses that used the phrase <quotes> raving misogyny <unquotes> and that's the last impression I'd want to give. Unless I was deliberately winding up my female mates, that is.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

al duncan
Posted on Monday, April 25, 2005 - 08:47 am:   

*Ahem*. That would be "porphyria-ridden", of course.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Nancy Jane Moore
Posted on Monday, April 25, 2005 - 02:23 pm:   

Yes, Timmi, Jeanne's rant definitely belongs in this collection, perhaps preceded by the original essay by Joanna Russ and maybe complemented by an essay of yours, say the one on "What I Didn't See" or one of your critiques of the clueless male reviewers of feminist SF.

I've been working on a rant myself, so I appreciate the compiling of resources (so I can properly reference the past, if necessary). Will there be room in this future collection of manifestos for new rants? Mine will be about science fiction, not the Royal Family.

Nancy
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Monday, April 25, 2005 - 08:22 pm:   

Oh, absolutely--new rants welcome! LOL.

Al--your enthusiasm is spectacular.

JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Ellen Datlow
Posted on Monday, April 25, 2005 - 09:29 pm:   

Timmi,
I never saw your essay on "What I didn't See?" Where was it published.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Tuesday, April 26, 2005 - 06:31 am:   

Well, that was nauseating. I've deleted the offending photo. If I'd checked sooner, I would have deleted it earlier. If it happens again, I may have to just lock my board against postings.

JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Nancy Jane Moore
Posted on Tuesday, April 26, 2005 - 09:14 am:   

I may have mischaracterized Timmi's essay, Ellen. It's not just about "What I Didn't See." But she discusses some of the brouhaha in her essay "The Cliche From Outer Space," which appears in her recent collection of essays, The Grand Conversation, and also in Extrapolation Vol. 44, No. 1, Spring 2003.

Nancy
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

L. Timmel Duchamp
Posted on Tuesday, April 26, 2005 - 10:55 am:   

Ellen, my essay, "Something Rich and Strange: Karen Joy Fowler's 'What I Didn't See'," is forthcoming in 2006 in Daughters of the Earth, ed. Justine Larbalastier, from Wesleyan University Press, alongside a reprint of the story. I don't think of this essay as a manifesto or rant (though I suppose my Extrapolation essays could be read as manifestos of a sort). It's scholarly in approach, though Justine required that it be written in a language & style that can be read by non-scholars without difficulty. & besides undertaking a close reading of the story & discussing why it is, properly speaking, science fiction, the essay also talks about the importance for feminist sf of its canon.

Timmi
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Ellen Datlow
Posted on Tuesday, April 26, 2005 - 11:52 am:   

Ah. It's Timmi's forthcoming essay that I've been waiting for :-)
Thanks.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Niall
Posted on Tuesday, April 26, 2005 - 01:25 pm:   

"The Squandered Promise of Science Fiction" by Jonathan Lethem:

http://www.sinc.sunysb.edu/Stu/dmyers/lethems_vision.html

And there's always the Mundane Manifesto:

http://www.mundanesf.com/default.asp?id=2&mnu=2
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Richard Calder
Posted on Tuesday, April 26, 2005 - 02:20 pm:   

I hadn't previously read the Lethem essay. It's marvellous! So thanks for the link ...
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Martin
Posted on Wednesday, April 27, 2005 - 12:24 am:   

Gabe Chouinard: Minor Futurism

http://www.locusmag.com/2003/Reviews/Chouinard01.html

Michael Swanwick: A User's Guide To The Post Moderns

http://www.sfrevu.com/ISSUES/2003/0309/The%20User's%20Guide%20to%20the%20Postmoderns/Review.htm
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jörn Grote
Posted on Wednesday, April 27, 2005 - 02:17 am:   

Hard SF by Chris Moriarty
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Lawrence A
Posted on Wednesday, April 27, 2005 - 02:21 am:   

Has anyone seen a good coherent online rant (hope that's not oxymoronic) that scathingly cuts down Margaret Atwood for her obvious embarrassment at winning some SF award for The Handmaid's Tale, and more recently her insistence that 'Oryx and Crake' is not science fiction! It's set in the far future and about bio-engineered beings but it's not SF. In which case I have not read a single SF story in my life and neither has anybody else here.

In that case science fiction does not exist, can never exist in any medium whatsoever, and we are all just delusional idiots for thinking that there is such a thing as science fiction.

Atwood just reeks of that fatuous elitist pomposity that casts their nose down at anything that wasn't on her profs' recommended reading list at Radcliffe. Seems she is so afraid of being grouped together with Star Trek geeks, which is what she obviously mistakes SF for.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jörn Grote
Posted on Wednesday, April 27, 2005 - 02:33 am:   

I only found John Clutes not so nice review of her book, but he cuts deep enough.

Libertarianism and the Hard SF Renaissance by Eric Raymond

The Charms and Terrors of Military SF by Eric Raymond
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jörn Grote
Posted on Wednesday, April 27, 2005 - 02:40 am:   

Something more recent

On swings, roundabouts, and long-term trends in science fiction by Charles Stross

http://www.popsci.com/popsci/science/article/0,20967,676265-3,00.html
Is Science Fiction About to Go Blind? by Gregory Mone
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jörn Grote
Posted on Wednesday, April 27, 2005 - 02:49 am:   

How Shit Became Shinola: Definition and Redefinition of Space Opera by David G. Hartwell & Kathryn Cramer
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

AnnaT
Posted on Wednesday, April 27, 2005 - 04:45 am:   

"The Anti-Social Primer: Writing Your Manifesto"
http://www.packingheat.com/tutorials/manifesto.html
"There is perhaps little else in the life of the Anti-Social that means quite so much as a properly insane manifesto."
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

tobias buckell
Posted on Wednesday, April 27, 2005 - 04:38 pm:   

Jeff, I have reseller webhosting that I can dedicate to it (and it would be easy enough to add in a wordpress weblog to manage all the pages) if someone can cover the cost of a custom URL.

If not then I can whip out something like manifestos.tobiasbuckell.com or something.



Tobias Buckell
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Wednesday, April 27, 2005 - 08:19 pm:   

That might be cool. I've got a few different ideas...

JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

tobias s buckell
Posted on Thursday, April 28, 2005 - 07:47 am:   

Great, just email me (tobias@tobiasbuckell.com) (godaddy.com has fairly cheap custom URLs) and I can get that set up sometime.

I've always, to be honest, wanted to write a manifesto that started out like most of the others but then slowly started contradicting itself until it collapsed.

We will always go left, unless we go right, up, but sometimes down, and always forward (unless someone disagrees, in which case we'll redefine going backward as going forward facing a different direction).
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

A.R.Yngve
Posted on Friday, April 29, 2005 - 05:32 am:   

I posted a manifesto on the ASIMOV's board a while back, but it died a lonely death.

If I can recall correctly it was called "The KICKASS SCIENCE FICTION MANIFESTO", and proclaimed that the only good SF literature was that which hit the reader on both the gut level AND the emotional level.

Great SF should affect the reader like rock music: totally engage all senses, blow your mind, and "kick ass".

Example: THE STARS MY DESTINATION is Kickass SF. Kickass SF can be violent, but doesn't have to be -- Asimov's "Nightfall" is definitely kickass.

-A.R.Yngve
http://yngve.bravehost.com


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Scott Edelman
Posted on Friday, April 29, 2005 - 07:21 am:   

My editorial for the first issue of LAST WAVE magazine was a manifesto of sorts, though I didn't label it as such. Years later, Bryan Cholfin wrote me a letter at SCIENCE FICTION AGE to imply that I had sold out, consisting entirely of paragraphs from that editorial, without attribution. "Hmmm ... This sounds familiar," I thought ...

I of course printed it in the SFA Letters column.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jayme Lynn Blaschke
Posted on Friday, April 29, 2005 - 01:06 pm:   

The Mundane Manifesto is an interesting and entertaining read:

http://mundanesf.com/default.asp?id=2&mnu=2

There's some fun stuff in there.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Alan DeNiro
Posted on Friday, April 29, 2005 - 02:03 pm:   

Here's something that I wondered if other people found to be true. And maybe this wasn't always true. But a lot of times it seems the issue isn't between people with different ideas about SF/F articulating those opinions (in manifestos and otherwise). Rather, I think there's a sizeable minority of SF/F writers who consider the whole idea of writing about writing anathema in the first place, that it in of itself "ruins" writing, pulling back the black curtain like that. I think the roots of this come from the early roots of the genre, when someone voluminous enough could eke out a living in the short fiction field: writing as if running across a burning bridge, and don't look back. But, I could be wrong. Any thoughts?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jayme Lynn Blaschke
Posted on Friday, April 29, 2005 - 02:52 pm:   

Writing about writing as anathema? Not for me, really. I come from a journalism background, where writing is really dissected down to as close a science as you can get it--structure, rules, different types of writing and suchlike. Granted, journalism writing and fiction writing are two very different animals (er, at least they should be) but that background attitude carries over, so I don't have any qualms about writing about the technical aspects of my fiction writing. Not that I do all that much of it, but I sure talk the heck out of it at cons. Sure, there's some hard-to-define, mystical "then a miracle happens" element to the inspiration that leads to a story, the genesis moment as it were, which is what people are really asking when they say "Where do you get your ideas?" No way I can explain that weird synchronicity that conflates random ideas and influences into critical mass of fiction. But I can discuss the process as it arises *after* that genesis moment.

And of course, there are some writers who are far more successful writing about writing than they are writing about anything else...
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

A.R.Yngve
Posted on Saturday, April 30, 2005 - 11:14 am:   

As long as you don't get terribly pretentious, and focus on the craft, there's nothing wrong with writing about writing.

Do plumbers talk about plumbing? Do car mechanics talk about repairing cars? Are writers some sort of magicians who guard arcane secrets? Hogwash!

But... what if I don't tell you EVERYTHING about writing? Maybe there ARE some arcane secrets I'd like to keep to myself...?

He he. Ha ha haa! MUAA HA HA HAAA!!

-A.R.Yngve
http://yngve.bravehost.com
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Saturday, April 30, 2005 - 12:37 pm:   

Yeah, writers are magicians who guard arcane secrets. They just happen to be personal secrets.

JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Steve Tem
Posted on Saturday, April 30, 2005 - 03:14 pm:   

Thanks for all the wonderful links. I've been reading manifestos instead of short stories the last couple of days. And Scott, I remember that editorial--it was why I wanted to be in the magazine.

I always wanted to write a manifesto, but I was afraid it would turn into a depressing exercise, kind of like having the maitre d ask you, so loudly everyone in the restaurant can hear, "table for one?" I always seem to arrive too early or too late for these movement things-- I'm standing there with my thumb up my ass and the Happy Bus has already left for the lands beyond never. I also rarely get invited to lunch, but that's another story (or is it?).

-- Steve Tem
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Saturday, April 30, 2005 - 06:38 pm:   

There are also the Rat Bastards' manifestos

Chris Barzak:
http://web.archive.org/web/20031230002259/http://www.taverners-koans.com/rat
bastards/supreme.html

Alan DeNiro:
http://web.archive.org/web/20031230001740/www.taverners-koans.com/ratbastard
s/loosenotes.html
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Saturday, April 30, 2005 - 06:39 pm:   

Whoops--these should work.

Steve--you should write one!

Jeff


Chris Barzak:
http://web.archive.org/web/20031230002259/http://www.taverners-koans.com/ratbast ards/supreme.html

Alan DeNiro:
http://web.archive.org/web/20031230001740/www.taverners-koans.com/ratbastards/lo osenotes.html
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Saturday, April 30, 2005 - 06:40 pm:   

Grr. For some reason, there are hidden spaces in those URLs I can't get out.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Saturday, April 30, 2005 - 06:44 pm:   

A couple more, of a sort.

http://www.fantasticmetropolis.com/i/shadow/

http://www.fantasticmetropolis.com/i/20011209/

(And, for rants, this is a good site--but, if you want to discuss this, i.e., general "rants", please don't do it on this thread. This thread is manifestos mostly. :-) - http://www.justramit.co.uk/boredatwork.htm)
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jörn Grote
Posted on Saturday, April 30, 2005 - 11:40 pm:   

Beyond Cyberpunk by Gareth Branwyn
Cyberpunk in the Nineties by Bruce Sterling

on the same page
RIBOFUNK: The Manifesto by Paul Di Filippo

Gregor Mendel Died for Your Sins!
Free James Brown!
Listen to Your Mitochondria!
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jörn Grote
Posted on Saturday, April 30, 2005 - 11:51 pm:   

The Transhumanist Declaration
Principles of Extropy
The Singularitarian Principles

Not per se directly connected to SF, but in the context of much SF of recent years that deals with posthumans/transhumans/the singularity, maybe its of interest.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jörn Grote
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 12:01 am:   

Some good rants from Strange Horizon
The SciFi Superiority Complex: Elitism in SF/F/H by Tee Morris
The More Things Change: Science Fiction Literature and the New Narrative by Niko Silvester
Interstellar Conflict Across Time: Military and Structural Similarities and Differences Throughout the History of Space Opera by Derryl Murphy
The Golden Age of Fantasy Is Twelve: SF and the Young Adult Novel by Rachel Manija Brown
The Old Equations by Matthew Cheney
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Ben Payne
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 12:42 am:   

Wow, at the risk of making a redundant post, thanks everyone for these links... look forward to reading them all! and thank Jeff for getting the ball rolling... I knew there were manifestos i hadn't read, but had no idea how many!

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

des
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 03:54 am:   

The URL given earlier for the old Nemonymity Manifesto seems to be defunct.
I have now been able to get it via an Archive site:
http://tinyurl.com/czqtr
des
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 06:05 am:   

This is all wonderful.

Yes, I don't mind branching it out into non-SF/F stuff, or stuff remotely related to it.

Mistah Lain--ya wanna post some Surrealist Manifesto stuff? LOL.

After a certain point, I'll probably condense all of these links to a single post on my blog, then follow up with Tobias re a webpage of links for them, for more permanence...and then I'm giving a good deal of thought to doing a general anthology of manifestos, rants, etc.

JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jörn Grote
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 06:31 am:   

On the nature of Surface and Depth: or why most College Freshmen write terrible plays from the websnark
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jörn Grote
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 06:56 am:   

Socialists To The Stars by Eric Raymond
Science Fiction after the Future Went Away by Ken MacLeod
Slipstream by Jim Kelly
Cyberpunk by Jim Kelly
Slipstream: Modern Fantasy That Doesn't Suck by Lawrence Person
Slipstream by Bruce Sterling
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Geoffrey Maloney
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 07:35 am:   

Hi Jeff -- don't know if anyone has mentioned the Mundane SF Manifesto yet. I followed a link to it from the Emerald City site last night, but I've misplaced it now.

No, I've found it again: http://www.mundanesf.com/

Very interesting. Geoff Ryman seems to be behind it.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Tamar
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 08:24 am:   

Mike O'Driscoll (?) wrote a manifesto-style introduction on slipstream to the very first 'The Third Alternative.' I found it quite inspiring at the time (1995)... Unfortunately I can't find a link to it.:-(
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jörn Grote
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 08:41 am:   

http://eidolon.net/?section=eidolon_magazine&visiting_section=eidolon_magazine&p age=/eidolon_magazine/issue_17/17_egan.htm
"A Report on the Origins & Hazardous Effects of Miracle Ingredient A" by Greg Egan

Some from Infinity Plus
How SF lost the Space Race by Keith Brooke
Rope Tricks: Science Fiction after Socialism by David Curl
Gulliver Unravels: Generic Fantasy and the Loss of Subversion by John Grant
Fear of Fiction: Campbell's World and Other Obsolete Paradigms by Claude Lalumière

David Brin's blog on Modernism
Modernism 01: The Radical Notion Of Modernism
...
Modernism 13: Michael Crichton vs Science
...
Modernism 17: Addicted to Mysteries...
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 09:23 am:   

We may be getting a bit into the area of "essays on interesting subjects" rather than cataloguing pieces that showcase the kind of obsessive or corrective animating passion that generates a manifesto, but what the hey. It's all interesting.
JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jörn Grote
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 12:25 pm:   

I've already run dry, but here's one last link from my memory.
Fantasy isn't crap by China Mevielle
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Sunday, May 01, 2005 - 01:38 pm:   

Boy, that's reducing it down to its essentials....

JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2005 - 07:57 am:   

Rudy Rucker's original Transrealism manifesto has got to be online somewhere.

And I'll see if I can dig up our old Freestyle screed, which was inspired by ads in Surfer Magazine. I'd have to scan the old issues at this point...that's if all the rubber cement that held them together will cooperate.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Faren Miller
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2005 - 08:05 am:   

I'm too lazy at the moment to do a proper websearch, but Rudy Rucker has done a book on his fave approach to things "gnarliness", and talked about it at ICFA recently (that and "transrealism"). A future issue of Locus will have an interview with him where he tackles that stuff as well -- with enough intensity I think it will qualify as a "manifesto". Or you could just ask him, JV.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2005 - 10:32 am:   

Rudy's manifesto is online as a PDF at his old site:

http://www.mathcs.sjsu.edu/faculty/rucker/transrealistmanifesto.pdf
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2005 - 10:36 am:   

There was also the "Enthusiasts" movement, put forth by Cory Doctorow, I think in response to either the mundane thing or to the New Puritanism or perhaps to something else. Unless you're part of one of these movements, it's sometimes hard to identify distinguishing marks.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Steve Tem
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2005 - 11:39 am:   

Is anyone aware of any writings or studies re: the motivations behind creating these manifestos, particularly in regards to writing movements? I admit to being a little cynical about such things (or maybe it's simply jealousy over never being invited), but it would seem that more than aesthetic stances are involved. Maybe some notion that you're going to advance your career somehow, get more notice for your work? Or maybe some need to belong to something? Or perhaps an excuse to party?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2005 - 01:08 pm:   

A lot of times it's a kind of righteousness. Sometimes it's a way to try to de-marginalize a marginalized type of writing. Sometimes it's an offshoot of a political viewpoint, of course. Sometimes I think it's a way for a writer or group of writers to categorize work in a way that removes the need to deal with a work on an authentic, personal, individual level.

But a lot of these movements are also created by academics, no? And the reasoning there is also the same--to name something is to possess it, in a way. It's a kind of marking of territory.

These are random thoughts at the end of a long day...

JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2005 - 09:32 pm:   

Sometimes it's just high spirits--an extension of too many writers at one small party.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

des
Posted on Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - 05:15 am:   

JV said: And the reasoning there is also the same--to name something is to possess it, in a way. It's a kind of marking of territory.

Indeed - and my own old 'manifesto' paradoxically in fact territorialises the idea of non-naming with a name!
However, by issuing one's 'territory' in this way, one perhaps makes it everyone's territory eventually and gradually. A story, for example, is one's own creation and one owns its inception and thrust for publication - but then it begins to live and breathe in the world, fending for itself ... entering every reader's imagination sump with unknown and instinctive repercussive creativity of their own. The author has no more artistic jurisdiction over the story as it stands; it is immutable (unless the process is triggered again with, say, a rewrite) and the author is just one among many descriptive, interpretative, evaluatory views (equal views) on it.
The same applies to a 'manifesto' - where if the manifesto takes off as is presumably intended, then it reaches out for 'disciples', and these add to and subtract from the initial core manifesto with new evolving (if unexpressed) 'manifestos' of their own. The evolving 'Movement', if one consequently transpires, does not necessarily belong as 'property' to the territory of the First Mover's 'manifesto'. A similar process to a story's rite of passage?
Thinking aloud...
des

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Michael Swanwick
Posted on Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - 06:07 am:   

An overfastidious concern for the truth compels me to mention that "A User's Guide to the Postmoderns" was never meant as a manifesto or polemic -- just as a bit of publicity for a batch of writers who, it may be difficult to remember at this remove, were writing wonderful stuff and getting no attention whatsoever. With the exception of Gibson, of course.

It might well be considered a "rant," though. I phrased it in as overheated a fashion as I could so that people wouldn't take it too seriously. Not that it worked, mind you.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - 06:12 am:   

I thought the User's Guide was great, Michael. I agree that it doesn't read like a manifesto or polemic. But, the interesting thing is--many times an essay like that gets published and just because it promotes certain writers, it is seen as a manifesto condemning those it doesn't mention. I don't mean that was your intent, or the intent of anyone who just wants to get the word out on writers who might be under-appreciated. But that, unfortunately, some people misinterpret enthusiasm for one group to mean the author of such an essay believes another group to be lacking. And suddenly there's a manifesto where one never existed.

JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Steve Tem
Posted on Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - 06:43 am:   

Writers are a touchy bunch.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Jayme Lynn Blaschke
Posted on Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - 07:36 am:   

I've always viewed manifestos as reactionary. As in, writer(s) get a bug up the ass, and a manifesto is the result.

By their nature, manifestos can't exist in a vacuum. They owe their very existence to the fact that (in a literary context) the proponents of said manifesto see some degree of flaw, failing or other undesirable elements in a discipline of writing they are nominally connected with, and the manifesto is the codification of their efforts to rehabilitate those remaining elements of the discipline which they view as worthy.

Usually they make some good points, but the very concept of a manifesto strikes me as elitist. How about an anti-manifesto manifesto? Let's see some passion there! ;-)
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - 09:55 am:   

Can't recall if Larry McCaffery ever summed up a manifestoid for "Avant-Pop."
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

David G. Hartwell
Posted on Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - 10:56 am:   

I just wanted to thank you all, and Jeff particularly, for starting this ball rolling just when I have been composing a keynote speech for the Eaton Conference to be given tomorrow night, on "SF:The Current State of the "Disagreement."
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - 11:44 am:   

This will end in pie-throwing.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - 12:02 pm:   

LOL!

Glad it was useful, David! It's all fascinating to me, to see a lot of this material in one place.

JeffV
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Josh Lukin
Posted on Friday, May 06, 2005 - 07:51 pm:   

Chandler Davis on race/ethnicity in sf:

http://www.pseudopodium.org/repress/chandler-davis/critique-1949.html
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Josh Lukin
Posted on Friday, May 06, 2005 - 07:56 pm:   

Ray Davis' anti-rant, responding to Lethem:

http://www.pseudopodium.org/kokonino/jlvls.html
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Nick Mamatas
Posted on Thursday, May 12, 2005 - 12:57 pm:   

Here's one on noir.

http://www.domenicstansberry.com/newsletter.htm
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Monday, May 16, 2005 - 06:43 am:   

I've given it a lot of thought, and I'm about 85% sure I'll want to put together an anthology of manifestos, rants, etc., with appropriate front and end matter. And probably including commentary from those involved in said manifestos, rants, on how they feel about it now.

Probably start on it late this year.

Jeff
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Ellen Datlow
Posted on Monday, May 16, 2005 - 09:30 pm:   

The Book of Rants--or wasn't there one called Rants! about ten years ago.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

steve aylett
Posted on Tuesday, May 17, 2005 - 04:05 am:   

Stewart Home has written several, under several different names - the most well-known is the NEOIST MANIFESTO.

And i thought my rant 'On Reading New Books' in the Tao Te Jinx was good & bitter.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

JV
Posted on Tuesday, May 17, 2005 - 06:44 am:   

I'd been thinking manifestos/rants in general, but probably would have to focus on SF/F/speculative fiction. With some peripheral ones that tie in, like the surrealists. That could be quite interesting, actually--to track the influence of one manifesto on another, and to include all supporting manifestos that built on one another. Oy. I think I need to clone myself.

Ellen--I'll look up Rants!

Jeff

Add Your Message Here
Post:
Username: Posting Information:
This is a private posting area. Only registered users and moderators may post messages here.
Password:
Options: Enable HTML code in message
Automatically activate URLs in message
Action:

Topics | Last Day | Last Week | Tree View | Search | User List | Help/Instructions | Program Credits Administration