ConFusion 2015, Panel 11: Post-Colonial Science Fiction

Panelists included moderator Tobias Buckell, Karen Lord, Steven Erickson, Robert Jackson Bennett, and Leah Bobet.

– Are we doomed to forever colonize?

– dispensing with colonization runs against the grain of the species

– society continues to evolve, so our colonizations will evolve too

– space colonization is essentially a do-or-die situation. Only necessary in the direst circumstances.

– stories don’t necessarily have to create new things – they can eliminate old things

– colonization can be a result of flight; c.f. large waves of refugees.

– colonization in service of a common myth (“manifest destiny”)

– colonization can happen at a variety of resolutions

– colonization at the memetic level – someone else tells your story in their voice.

[FIRST NATIONS SPECULATIVE FICTION]

– China Mieville’s Embassytown

– propaganda becomes myth

[A FIRE UPON THE DEEP]

– positive colonization? Coexistence? Star Trek?

[IAN BANKS CULTURE NOVELS]

– Look at how colonization shifts the balance of power

– We don’t colonize places that we don’t want.

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