By Inez van der Spek
On the middle of this stimulating and provocative research is a technological know-how fiction tale through James Tiptree, Jr. (Alice Sheldon-Bradley, 1916–1987) a few brother and a sister (and fifty eight different people) who come upon an alien whereas on a starship touring to find a liveable planet. The publication comprises an summary of Tiptree’s paintings and of her amazing lifestyles because the in basic terms baby of jungle explorers, as a painter, an American agent in the course of and after global warfare II, an experimental psychologist, and a feminine technology fiction author in male hide.
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Extra resources for Alien Plots: Female Subjectivity and the Divine in the Light of James Tiptree's A Momentary Taste of Being' (Liverpool University Press - Liverpool Science Fiction Texts & Studies)
I shall argue that the alien life-form can be interpreted as a sign of the maternal figure or function as it is conceived of in psychoanalytical thought and cultural theory, in particular that of Julia Kristeva. In the light of this assumption, then, ‘A Momentary Taste of Being’ will be interpreted as a mother/daughter narrative in science fictional guise. I explore two possible versions of such a mother/daughter plot. In Chapter III, ‘A Momentary Taste of Being’ is read as a choric fantasy. The chora is a notion derived from Kristeva to designate the maternally connoted dimension of the construction of the subject, which stands in a dialogical relation to the paternally connoted symbolic.
Anxieties which are also reflected in the tension between these covers and the content of the stories in the magazine. While the women on the covers are pictured in the height of their formidability and demonic strength, the texts defeat the visual images of female strength, by having the women eventually destroyed by their own sexual desire or reproductive powers. Surprisingly, however, these female images of the pulp magazines can also be seen, according to Roberts, as material for later feminist revisions of science fiction.
By the end of the seventies it had become clear that SF was no longer a kind of juvenile men’s club. Women were to be seen at the bar. SF’s unexpressed half was beginning to speak out. 58 During the 1980s and the 1990s, in which postmodernism and cyberpunk have deeply influenced the genre, these feminist voices continue to sound. Many women from the beginning are still active in writing science fiction, while interesting new authors like Octavia Butler, Joan Slonczewski, Rhoda Lerman, Pat Murphy and Gwyneth Jones (to name just a few) have entered the field.