kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Last panel report, unless I manage to dredge up some memories of the Fans Aren't Slans panel (unlikely at this point).

Postcolonial SF
Kat Feete, S.M. Stirling
Much of the verve of early SF came from its transposition in space of the colonial epic, and its echoes still shape modern SF. Has there ever been a postcolonial movement, or at least an undercurrent, in SF?

(Steve Laflamme, listed on the program, did not show.)

notes )
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Traditional Women's Crafts and Fantasy
Cynthia Gonsalves, Emily Wagner, Catherynne Valente
There's always a woman who weaves beautifully, a goodwife who can dye like a dream, and maybe even a spinning wheel. But what are these crafts really like? What goes into them? How do you write them plausibly? How do you create the kind of society that supports these activities. And how does gender fit into all of this?

These are notes for about 60 of the 90 minutes.

notes )
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Handily, the Locus blog just put up a post on Disability and Sff, for two different takes on the topic.

See also [livejournal.com profile] skwidly's notes on this panel.

Death, Illness and Disability in Fantasy and Science Fiction
Jay Lake, Joe Haldeman, John Kessel, Edmund R. Meskys, Pat Reynolds, Ellen Klages
Does the future really only belong to the physically perfect?

I missed the introductions. Lake has cancer and it was looking very grim for a while. Meskys is blind. Klages has a sister with Down Syndrome.

([livejournal.com profile] skwidly's notes state that Haldeman and Klages are also disabled.)

notes )
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Three panels, one general report, and maybe one followup to go. Slow but steady . . .

The Philosophy of Science
Chad R. Orzel, James Morrow, Jeff Warner, Richard Crownover, M.D., Ph.D., DD Barant
To what extent does SF explore the meaning of science for scientists and create the ideas that our culture has of science?

Barant & Morrow are SF authors. Crownover does clinical medical research; Orzel is a physicist and non-fiction author. Warner is a media criticism guy.

notes )
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

[livejournal.com profile] skwidly has posted notes from my two explicitly-race-related panels at WorldCon, Writing the Other and Other Assumptions and Writing Racial and Ethnic Diversity in Geographic Terms (this would be the panel with L. Jagi Lamplighter that has resulted in an imbroglio).

Also, two of yesterday's link dump items are highly relevant and written by people who, I would bet money, have never heard of WorldCon. Fandom is a part of society, people.

  • Notes From The Geek Show: An Open Letter to John C. Wright :: "You would do well to start with the premise that the head of the SyFy Channel's public commitment to not simply presenting more homosexuality but to presenting it as a non-issue *might* actually be born of a genuine belief that this is an ethical thing to do. // . . . we, the Elders of Sodom do have those opinions, trust me, and many within our ranks hold such opinions not because they are themselves homosexual, (we are open to all and sundry, welcoming even to the Brethren of Breeders,) but simply because they have a trait we refer to as "empathy." The ethics we hold to among the Elders of Sodom is, generally speaking, based primarily on this "empathy," and therefore rejects homophobia for the same reasons it rejects racism, misogyny, and all other forms of prejudice."
    (tags: sexuality sff)
  • [livejournal.com profile] yuki_onna: An Open Letter :: "I said I wouldn't try to change your minds. It's pointless. All I'm saying is that when given an opportunity to spend my $10 on a book by someone who hasn't personally insulted me and my friends, and someone who has? It's an easy choice. It's a predictable choice. And fortunately, not a one of you is making it any harder by writing such heartbreaking works of genius that I have to second guess that choice, even a little bit."
  • We are respectable negroes: Is “Racism” dead?: An in-depth conversation with America’s most inflammatory and most misunderstood word :: "WARNNN: Divorcing you from structure seems to be at the heart of this flattening. // Racism: Exactly. They focus on individual attitudes—racially hostile attitudes—so as to limit the scope of racism to the hearts and minds of benighted souls. Not systematic discrimination in housing, the criminal justice system, education, employment. Not racism with any kind of heft or history to it, but just attitudes. That way, anyone can be racist and all racisms are equal. They can say, “Hey, racism is a 2-way street!” That’s their new favorite saying."
    (tags: race)
  • stuff white people do: mistake non-white people for service workers :: "Derald Wing Sue, a psychologist, labels such incidents "racial microaggressions" (he adopted the term from an earlier psychiatrist, Chester M. Pierce). Sue defines these behaviors as "everyday insults, indignities and demeaning messages sent to people of color by well-intentioned white people who are unaware of the hidden messages being sent.""
    (tags: race)
  • How to fix racial disparities in medical care. - By Darshak Sanghavi - Slate Magazine :: "Over and over, this theme recurs: Universal quality-improvement plans coupled with publicly reported measures are the best way to cut health disparities" between different races and classes.
  • [livejournal.com profile] book_icons: For fellow fans of Kate Ross's Julian Kestrel mysteries!

More when I have time; something is horribly wrong with my computer.

WorldCon: followup

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009 11:07 pm
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

L. Jagi Lamplighter just advised me that she has put up a post titled Revelation and Apology. I was literally shutting down for the night so don't have time to read and respond now, but it's there.

This is just a pointer so I'm disabling comments; if I have a substantive response I will make another post with comments on, or point to a comment there in the overall report I am halfway through.

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

(I was planning to write this as a section of my big roundup post pretty much from the start, to be titled "Ego Boosting and Deflating," but since I see an aspect of it is being discussed, I thought I should break it out separately so it would go up quicker.)

A number of people were kind enough to say to me that they liked things I said on panels or the way I moderated or things I write online. I am very grateful for and appreciative of those comments. However, since very few people (even at a con!) are going to come up to me and say that they thought I did a lousy job or said something stupid, I thought it important to publicly acknowledge the times I did something wrong at the con.

  • I suggested a group of people sit somewhere physically incapable of accommodating at least one of the members of the group. I apologized to the group at least but possibly not to the specific person; I apologize for being ableist and sizeist.
  • During a panel, I interrupted [livejournal.com profile] karnythia to explain something that she was going to get to in just a minute. (I apologized after.)
  • Upon reflection, I'm pretty sure I mispronounced [livejournal.com profile] karnythia's name at least once while on a panel. I apologize.

    (I read by word recognition not phonetics and keep wanting to swap the "n" and "y" in her name, "cah-RIN-thee-ah" instead of "car-NEE-thee-ah." However, she said it out loud, that's no excuse, I should have written it down.)

  • I told Kathryn Cramer something true but not complete and appeared two-faced as a result.

    When she approached me and said that she regretted that I had dropped off a panel with her called "X, Why? Minorities in a Large Field, or Majorities in Our Own?," I said that I had been scheduled for items at 9:00, 10:00 (that one), 11:00, and 12:30. I should also have added "and as you know, we have fundamental differences of viewpoint, so I didn't feel it appropriate to be on a panel with you." I apologize for the inaccuracy.

    (I was considerably surprised by her approaching me, especially since I had previously been told that she had stated that I had refused to be on a panel with her [*], and so socialization took over in the absence of preparation.)

    [*] Yes, her knowledge of this raises other issues; I'm asking you all to defer discussion of them for now.

  • I was a thoughtless Anglophone to hotel staff several times.

I have more complicated thoughts on my moderation of the "Writing Racial and Ethnic Diversity in Geographic Terms" panel, but I think they need to wait.

Do feel free to add to this list. Anonymous commenting is on here as usual, but I will screen gratuitously nasty comments (and then repost under ROT13 so you all can judge for yourselves).

(As I've said before: please don't say "oh gosh those aren't that bad, you're too hard on yourself" or whatever. I'm not looking for consolation or cookies. Also, I'd appreciate it if you'd save anything nice you were planning to say for a more topical post. => )

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
When did it get so late? Arrgh.

White is Good, Curves are Great, but Seldom a Purple Face to Be Seen
Rani Graff, Doselle Young (M), Michelle Kendall, N.K. Jemisin
Despite the ubiquity of aliens in a range of pretty colours, SF and fantasy art still seems to be rather averse to the presentation of humans in their full spectrum. How much of this is the market? How much is it thoughtlessness? How much is it a fear of “exoticizing” and exploitation? How much is just old fashioned discrimination?

I came in late and missed all the introductions (which since the participant bios aren't anywhere to be found, even though I know people submitted them, means I must now rely on Google & inference). Young, Kendall, and Jemisin are all African-American; Young writes for American comics; Kendall ([livejournal.com profile] karnythia) is a writer and co-founder of Verb Noire, a new publisher; Jemisin is a writer. Graff is from Israel and the founder of Graff Publishing, a small press.

notes )
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Panel notes that I edited yesterday in a brief moment of downtime.

Anatomy for Writers, Heroes and Tavern Brawlers
Sean McMullen assisted by Jetse de Vries
Author, karate instructor, fencer and first aid officer Sean McMullen provides a tour of how the human body can and cannot be damaged. Want to know where a hero can be punched without any effect? Worried about his vascular dilation? Curious about the real-life version of Mr Spock’s nerve pinch? Not sure whether a really long sword fight is three hours or seven seconds? Wondering why readers are laughing because your hero has microsecond reactions? Come along and find out in complete safety.

This was in a much, much too small room: practical stuff like this, that promises to be fun too, is always really popular. McMullen was I think very recently off a plane from the other side of the world and so a little discombobulated, but he had thorough notes and did a good job getting through them.

A lot of these descriptions are of physical moves and may not be very clear; don't hesitate to ask for clarification. Everything is McMullen's statements unless otherwise noted.

notes )
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

So I have a lot of things to say about WorldCon—some panel notes ready to go, mental notes for an overall summary, hopes of doing at least an impressionistic summary of the "Fans Aren't Slans" panel since I don't know if anyone was taking notes, etc.

Before all that, however, I see that L. Jagi Lamplighter, who was a participant on a panel I moderated called "Writing Racial and Ethnic Diversity in Geographic Terms," has made two posts objecting to things that I and [livejournal.com profile] karnythia said in response to her: The Race Question: Who Is Going To Win?, which is about the panel overall, and Part Two: Running With Race, which is about [livejournal.com profile] karnythia specifically. (Tobias Buckell said similar things; I note that she did not mention him at all, while [livejournal.com profile] karnythia and I are unnamed "girls.")

I wish to put on the record (my record, that is) what I said there:

Hi. I was the moderator.

You will recall that I said at the panel that I thought it important to point out statements based on harmful assumptions, that doing so did not mean that I thought that people were evil people, but that racist attitudes permeate our society.

In that spirit, I was going to engage with your comments (for instance, I dispute your accuracy of at least one thing I said).

However, this post [about [livejournal.com profile] karnythia] is sufficiently disrespectful that I cannot discuss this topic with you.

Very truly yours,

Kate Nepveu

I work very hard to remember that understanding racism is a difficult and long process. But I have already said much of what I would have to Ms. Lamplighter in person during the panel, and as all it got me was condescension and insult behind my back (no names in the post = I'd never have seen it if [livejournal.com profile] karnythia hadn't found it somewhere and linked), I choose to conserve my energy until such time as Ms. Lamplighter is willing to discuss this topic without being astonishingly rude and dismissive to women of color.

(Was anyone taking notes at the actual panel?)

Some further reading:

is it me

Monday, August 10th, 2009 12:02 am
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

or are the WorldCon program participant bios nowhere to be found either on the masses of paper handed out at registration or on the website?

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

[livejournal.com profile] skwidly posted notes and asks whether the room being overwhelmingly female indicated a gender disparity in re-reading behaviors. I have absolutely no idea whatsoever. What do you all think?

(I'm feeling better, though still pretty wobbly, especially after my marathon day, and have given up on the idea of posting notes about my own panels. Fortunately [livejournal.com profile] skwidly or an audio recorder was at all the rest of them (err, well, maybe not the LibraryThing/Good Reads one; did I mention wobbly?) and I can rely on other people! I do have notes from a bunch of other panels that I will post at some point. Now I'm debating between a relaxing bath, a nap, or a trip to IGA to get more drinkable fluids. (The nap is winning.))

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)


  • Hellspark, Janet Kagan: really good book involving legal issues; the main character impersonates a byworld judge, who adjudicates interplanetary cultural-clash problems, and is faced with an accusation of murder and a question of sentience. Booklog posts.
  • "Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?": And Other Conversations About Race, Beverly Daniel Tatum: general-audience book about the formation of racial identity, highly accessible and readable and illuminating. Cannot recommend this strongly enough.
  • Racism without Racists: Color-Blind Racism and the Persistence of Racial Inequality in the United States, Eduard Bonilla-Silva: academic but still readable work about the rhetorical means used to sustain racial inequality (nb. I am only halfway through but am finding it really resonates with discussions I have seen).
  • How the Irish Became White, Noel Ignatiev: what the title says (I haven't read it yet but it comes very highly recommended).
  • Acacia, David Anthony Durham (ETA: now with 100% more Campbell Award winner goodness!): excellent and exciting secondary-world fantasy that is deliberately epic, multiracial, and concerned about empire and resources and related issues. My Tor.com review.


  • Carl Brandon Society, including its wiki.
  • Potted history of RaceFail by Ann Somerville.
  • Clear introduction to the issues raised by RaceFail by Mary Ann Mohanraj guesting at Whatever: Part I, for Everyone; Part II, for Writers.
  • Quote from [livejournal.com profile] vito_excalibur as part of an imaginary dialogue:

    So to recap, you're saying that I can make stupid racist mistakes in front of God and everybody, and still probably avoid the naked conga line of fail, as long as

    1) I don't respond to the people calling me out by insulting the shit out of them, and

    2) If I must talk about what people are saying about me, I link to what they're actually saying, and don't lie about it?

  • [livejournal.com profile] yuki_onna, Let Me Tell You a Story:

    And when we see story after story that has no one like us in it, . . . this is what we hear:

    You do not have a right to live. There are no stories for you, to teach you how to survive, because the world would prefer you didn't. You don't get to be human, to understand your suffering or move beyond it. In the perfect future society, you do not exist. We who are colorblind, genderblind, sexualityblind would prefer not to see you even now.

  • Joann Sfar, dedication/introduction to The Rabbi's Cat 2: Africa's Jerusalem:

    "For a long time I thought that there was no point in doing a graphic novel against racism. That stance seemed so totally redundant that there was no need to flog a dying horse. Times are changing, apparently. Chances are everything's already been said, but since no one is paying attention you have to start all over again."

  • People's suggestions about Internet jerkitude.
  • My delicious links on sundown towns.
  • ETA: [livejournal.com profile] spiralsheep on intersectionality:

    Expecting x, y, or z oppressed group to automatically understand and be able to implement anti-oppression strategies for a, b, or c oppressed group is merely another form of requiring disprivileged people to be twice as good at m or n while receiving only half as much reward for their work.

What else did I mention and forget to post here?


Saturday, August 8th, 2009 07:10 pm
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

Prior plan: have nice dinner with Chad, watch fireworks.

New plan: huddle in room feeling miserably ill, hope to feel human by nine a.m. tomorrow.

If this is a communicable disease I really hope I haven't given it to anyone else. If I have, I apologize unreservedly.

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Jo Walton, Ron Drummond, Naomi Libiki, Anne Gwin, Kate Nepveu (M)
There is a school of thought that re-reading is a juvenile habit, something children demand as a way to gain comfort. Yet most fans re-read. All critics do. What is it we gain from re-reading, do some texts bear more re-reading than others? And does this notion of comfort reading have any validity?

This is going to be a very impressionistic panel report, because I was moderating, not taking notes (except very cryptic ones about things to talk about next), and since I wanted this to be a very participatory panel, a lot of my brain was taken up with noting who was next to be called on and who hadn't spoken yet. I welcome corrections, additions, and further discussion.

Read more... )
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

Thursday we'd gotten up early (and I'd been up earlier with SteelyKid) for the drive to Montreal; I'd had a panel which I found fun but tiring; and we had a long leisurely dinner with old and new acquaintances. So when I got to my room around 11-ish, I decided to pace myself and go to bed, instead of any parties.

I slept for a solid nine hours (!!), went to panels and socialized and had another panel of my own and had dinner with friends and went to a panel at which one of the panelists annoyed me and could not get the damn Internet to work, and at 9:00 I hated the world and decided to take some Tylenol and nap.

At 9:30 Chad said he was leaving for the Tor.com party and I said I needed another half-hour and was re-setting my alarms.

(I imagine you can see where this is going.)

At 1:30 Chad woke me up when he came back to the room; I'd slept through two different alarms and two calls from him.

I'd say that tonight, parties for sure! except tomorrow is my day from hell (9:00-10:00, internet jerkitude panel; 11:00-12:00, LibraryThing & Good Readers panel (which ought not be fraught but I am moderating which I find involves a lot of work), 12:30-2:00, racial & ethnic diversity in geographic terms panel (need I say more? other than that I'm moderating this one too)).

I'm having fun, honest, but my programming is stressing me out a lot more than I expected.

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

I think I've heard about most people I know who are coming to Worldcon, but just in case:

[Poll #1435575]
kate_nepveu: cookie with "meets minimum standards of decent human" written in icing (have a cookie)

So I'm thinking about my Worldcon panels, and I'd like your input on—well, probably on a couple, but to start, there's "How Not to be a Jerk Online." Specifically, I'm trying to come up with a list of bedrock principles that apply across all online contexts, and I keep getting bogged down in my lawyer tendencies. So what would you say are the fundamental, applies-anywhere minimum requirements of human decency when it comes to online interactions? (I'm not saying I won't apply my lawyer tendencies to your answers, but it'd at least help as a starting point.)

Also, and I'm serious about this, I want you to tell me if you think I've been a jerk online. You can comment anonymously, though those comments are screened in case some passerby takes the opportunity to get unnecessarily vicious. I don't seem to be able to turn off IP tracking on a per-entry basis, but I promise not to use it unless you're commenting with threats or the like.

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

The awesome [livejournal.com profile] pgdudda has turned my list of Worldcon programming involving diversity, discrimination, and non-European-derived topics into a handy one page (two-sided, legal size) PDF handout—and added a list of parties to look for, too. Copies will be available at the con in the flyer/freebie racks, or print your own now.

kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Inspired by [livejournal.com profile] pgdudda's post, behind the cut is a list of Worldcon panels or program items that seemed to be explicitly about discrimination, diversity, race, gender, sexuality, disability, and/or non-European-derived works, artists, and fandoms, or to necessarily require discussion of the above. Because there's a fair bit of anime & manga programming, I put that separately. The lists are otherwise in chronological order. Absolutely no comment or endorsement is implied by an item's appearance on this list. If I missed something, let me know; this is based on a pretty quick skim through the book.

Note that something awful happened to the formatting of the academic talk descriptions in the program book; I put in // to mark what I infer are different papers.

The full program book is available in PDF; I hope that grids and something easier to manage are on the way. This list itself may be turned into an at-con handout with grid or some such, so stay tuned.

ETA July 23 8:00 a.m.: added three six items. Also forgot to note that I don't speak French so was going strictly off English descriptions. If you speak French or know of a bilingual panel (which appear to not be marked at all in the program book as such), please comment.

ETA July 23 6:30 p.m.: new additions are now marked with one or two *, depending on whether they were added this round or last round. Bilingual items are marked as such in the titles, using the information here.. I've also now bolded the relevant paper(s) in the academic track items for ease of reference, and gone through all the French-language descriptions with two web translators.

I am now finished updating this unless people point me to things I've missed.

ETA July 31: someone did! I'll put this in the proper place in the list under the cut too.

2-304 Fri/Ven 19:00 1hr
P-511D Human Culture
Time TravellerTM & Skins
Skawennati Tricia Frangnito, Jason Lewis
“TimeTravellerTM” is a series of Machinima episodes about a Mohawk person living in 2121 using glasses to view historical events. This is being ‘filmed’ in second life and the first episode will be ready before the convention. There will be a screening of the episode followed by a talk and Q&A. The “Skins” project is a mod’ed game using the unreal tournament game engine. It is based on Iroquois legends and was put together with teenagers from the Iroquois. A video of the project and a virtual slice of the game will be presented.

programming other than about anime & manga )

anime & manga items )

Crossposted to [livejournal.com profile] anticipation_09.

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