Sunday, August 28, 2011

Are queers human?

From lippenheimer, a thoughtful review of Slow River, pondering the consequences of straight/queer equality:

One of the main questions that classic feminist sci-fi explored was whether, if women had power and autonomy, they would create a world radically different from and better than the one we’ve got (a common means of getting this autonomy was the elimination of men, or escape from them, which is a depressing commentary on how bad things were in the real world). I suppose one could ask the same question about GLBT people, and in both cases, Griffith’s answer seems to be fairly negative, that both groups, being born into a world with a tradition of exploitation and violence, are liable to perpetuate those traditions.

Ammonite deliberately asked and answered "Are women human?" (I was so very tired of watching f/sf writers struggle with this 'question'. Ammonite was designed to end the debate.)

I hadn't thought about it in these terms before but apparently Slow River asks "Are queers human?" That wasn't my intent with the book . To me the main questions in the book are: "What makes us who we are? How far outside our normal behaviour will we go to stay alive? How do we come back? What makes two people who seem to be in the same situation respond so differently?" But I can see how some readers might use this set-up to consider the wider question, "Are queers human?" To me, the answer is perfectly obvious.


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