Popular ideas about science fiction represent the genre as a kind of projection
Popular ideas about science fiction represent the genre as a kind of projection of desire into the future – a way to make a claim about the nature of the world as it is and as it should be. In that way, we might think of the inherent political value of science fiction as akin to liberalism. Fantasy, on the other hand, tends to be more conservative, depicting worlds reminiscent of former/past human societies (so frequently: European medieveal period) in an effort to preserve the (often violent, repressive) logics found therein. I want you to think critically about Jemisin’s novel Fifth Season and how it refracts ‘real world’ dynamics in the space of the fantastic world it depicts. What is magic akin to? What is power – in our world, and in the fictional world?