epershand: Interlaced fingers, with a tattoo that reads "bookworm" (Frank bookworm)
epershand ([personal profile] epershand) wrote2012-04-11 08:43 am


Huzzah! I am starting to get my WisCon logistics in hand! So with no further ado, my 2012 WisCon logistics post!

I'm arriving in Madison on the evening of Tuesday, May 22, and leaving freakishly early on Monday, May 28 (No Monday programming for me. Sadface.) The delightful [personal profile] were_duck is putting me up for the duration \o/. My early arrival means that I'll actually get to do things like karaoke--yay!

(Madisonians - if you have time, l'd love to have pre-con hangouts with you Wednesday or Thursday. And if you're looking at this and speculating that I will be available to help you with last-minute convention prep tasks, then... that is possible. As long as your task doesn't involve dust.)

I'm currently on the following two panels (I've offered a third, but have no idea if I'll land on it)

Feminist Open Source Fandom Sat, 4:00–5:15 pm

There have now been several excellent Open Source projects that both adopted explicitly-feminist policies and addressed pressing needs of fandom, most notably Archive of Our Own and Dreamwidth. It is proposed that fandom offers an alternative to the established open source software culture, one that is more welcoming of feminist ideals. How have these projects succeeded? In what ways did their feminist stance enable that success? In what ways do their products reflect these same ideals? How do open source and feminism complement or conflict? What can we, as both participants and users, do to extend, build on or replicate these successes? How can we extend this consciousness to other axes of oppression and under-representation?

Gender-Variant Characters in SF (moderator) Sun, 8:30–9:45 am

Let's explore how gender variance and/or variant/trans* characters are represented in Science Fiction. How often are gender-variant characters used for the purpose of examining the experiences of cisgender individuals? How often is the variance of these characters integrated into a character/individual level experience? The example of the former, a planet-of-hats scenario (such as was done on Star Trek) in which a whole society is genderless/gender-variant, comes to mind. Mass Effect is an example of the use of a "mono-gendered" (yet hyper-sexualized) race, the Asari. How about a story where a whole species is genderless or gender-variant? Dragon Age 2 has one of the most prominent examples of a trans* character, Serendipity.

Note: I would love your suggestions of books and other things I should take a look at for Gender-Variant Characters in SF. I've got some existing favorites but would love more.
were_duck: Icon of woman hugging a man who looks like a page out of a book (Bookhug)

[personal profile] were_duck 2012-04-11 05:13 pm (UTC)(link)
I am sure [personal profile] futuransky has better suggestions! I mean, Left Hand of Darkness is a classic (as my wrists will soon suggest).

I think Ammonite by Nicola Griffith has some gender variance in it--it's basically a planet of all women, and highlights that that means a spectrum of people.

There's a trans woman who is a protagonist of The Bone Palace by Amanda Downum, which is a book I liked! There's also an important secondary character who is intersex.

Speaking of intersex, Shadow Man by Melissa Scott is dated but I think it's still interesting! It's from the 90s and basically extrapolates Anne Fausto-Sterling and Cheryl Chase's back-and-forth on what it would mean for a society to recognize five sexes instead of two. It flips that back in some interesting ways, and I think Warreven's gender is CERTAINLY worth discussing.

Kelley Eskridge's short stories featuring the gender-unspecified character Mars would definitely be good to look at--I think they're in her collection Dangerous Space.

I really want someone to read Triptych and discuss it with meeee. It's the poly time travel space aliens one, and the aliens kind of shrug and take on whatever human gender. Interesting triad dynamics there. Not sure how useful that would be to your panel, though.
aamcnamara: (Default)

[personal profile] aamcnamara 2012-04-11 07:26 pm (UTC)(link)
I think the genderswap cancer treatment short story is Gaiman, actually, in Smoke and Mirrors ("Changes"). (Just spent a while digging that up because I knew I should know what that was...)
likeadeuce: (Default)

[personal profile] likeadeuce 2012-04-11 05:18 pm (UTC)(link)
And, hopefully, Guerrilla Twilight Panel? Even if we have (have to!) hold it a bar. I'm getting in midday Friday; should figure out when Erin & Anika are getting in so we can logistic-this.
likeadeuce: (genius)

[personal profile] likeadeuce 2012-04-11 06:41 pm (UTC)(link)
*rubs hands together, Mr. Burns style*

brainwane: My smiling face, including a small gold bindi (Default)

[personal profile] brainwane 2012-04-11 06:52 pm (UTC)(link)
I wish I were going to be at WisCon and your mention of the feminist FLOSS panel reinvigorates that.

http://www.kith.org/logos/cons/WisCon2006/ might interest you.
aamcnamara: (Default)

[personal profile] aamcnamara 2012-04-11 07:38 pm (UTC)(link)
Raphael Carter's The Fortunate Fall--as I remember the narrator's genderless. Emma Bull's Bone Dance has a non-gender-binary character. Leah Bobet's Above (very new) has a gender-variant character. That's...all that springs to mind right at the moment.

I feel like SF/F sometimes (often?) falls into this pattern of "we will have an intersex character who is genderless/gender-variant! That just MAKES SENSE!" I am not a fan of that pattern. (Also, fantasy novels I've read have way more trans woman than trans men; FAAB people in fantasy novels who present as men are typically presenting that way because of external pressures/as a means to an end, not as an end in and of itself.) (Clearly I have FEELINGS about this topic and should probably just volunteer for the panel except imposter syndrome.)

(Anonymous) 2012-04-12 09:41 pm (UTC)(link)
Whoops okay. SPOILERS FOR SOME OF THOSE ARE BELOW. (Surprising how often "this character is gender-variant/etc." is a plot point! Another pattern.)

Fortunate Fall does pretty well? I can't remember if the narrator's genderless or whether gender is just considered irrelevant to the story (it's first-person very very close). I know that the author of that, Raphael Carter, is not cis--also a factor in the book's favor.

Bone Dance does the intersex-narrator-as-big-reveal thing, and it's related to the narrator being an android (? as I remember? it's been a while) so that's not the greatest; pretty sure there aren't any other gender-variant characters in that.

Above's antagonist is intersex and gender-variant, which is a plot point (check, check, check) but the reasons sie is an antagonist are pretty clearly divorced from hir intersex and gender-variant-ness. Also, sie gets to tell hir own story (with sie's own pronouns) at the climax of the book, which helps somewhat. So again, falling into some patterns--but there is nuance.

Relating to the lack of trans guys: Eon is a very recent YA-ish fantasy novel with a girl-living-as-boy as main character, which has a minor character who's a trans woman. The trans woman character is pretty well handled but again, falling into a pattern.

I should probably just write a YA secondary-world fantasy novel with a trans guy protagonist, instead of talking about it all the time, but in any case I really want it to exist.
aamcnamara: (Default)

[personal profile] aamcnamara 2012-04-12 09:42 pm (UTC)(link)
...that...was me. Somehow I was not logged in! Okay.

[identity profile] amicitia6.livejournal.com 2012-04-14 01:54 am (UTC)(link)
Hi. I'm a Madisonian.

[identity profile] amicitia6.livejournal.com 2012-04-15 09:08 pm (UTC)(link)
I just moved here in January for the new job. Alas, I don't have official vacation time yet, and am taking unofficial time right before WisCon to go to Reunion. But maybe next year!

Anyway, I could come meet you some evening for dinner or general hang-out-age. I have to do weird contortions to post on your DW so it might be easier to e-mail me - I still have my jarosenb @ mhc address.