Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Up The (Main)stream Without A Paddle (Part 1)

Still on the topic of Philippine Speculative Fiction's "marginalization", we have a post--Up The (Main)stream Without A Paddle (Part 1)--from More Than True. An excerpt:

Both essays are well written and peppered with illustrative examples, so I'll refrain from summarizing (and probably over-simplifying) the arguments of each, but while the keyword in both is "marginalization" that concept needed to be understood in relation to the word "mainstream."

Yet if "mainstream" refers to the prevailing attitudes/preferences of Philippine readers (as opposed to publishers/critics)... I just don't think that they care about whether a story is spec fic or not.

* I've never known anyone who would turn their nose up at a book because it was Philippine Spec Fic. Frankly, I know few Filipinos readers who would turn their nose up any story just because of fantasy or science fictional elements - the level of realism of the story just doesn't seem to be that big of a factor to Philippine readers.

I don't think that the fantastical element of the stories is an obstacle to that however: Putting aside the issue of the vernacular, I think it's just that locally we haven't yet produced the kind of spec fic that readers are accustomed to and look for: the sword and sorcery epics, the serial urban fantasies, the multi-arc space operas.

Click here to read the whole post.

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