“Unlike earlier dystopian narratives, cyberpunk invites us not only to accept the current socioeconomic order but to derive pleasure from what Jameson now diagnoses as an empty, lawless social space emerging out of the displacement of civil society – here conceptualized as the space between bourgeois privacy and state rule by the hegemonic sway of corporate logic”
“This is the home page of the Urth List, an email discussion group about the works of Gene Wolfe. If you would like to subscribe to the list, you can sign up on the web here. Once you’re signed up, you can contribute to the list by writing urth at urth dot net (you don’t need to use the more complex address the system will suggest).”
Hao Jingfang explains impetus for writing “Folding Beijing”:
“One morning, I was shopping at a street market just like the one described at the start of the story: Crowded, chaotic, dirty, lively, full of cheap goods piled up everywhere. Everyone was devoted to the task of bargaining. I thought then that Beijing was a city divided into multiple groups who did not interact at all in daily life. They had completely different lifestyles, habits, and socializing spaces—in fact, they rarely even met. My friends and I… had good educations and comfortable jobs, and we could see the results of our efforts and dream of advancement. But this city also had two other groups we usually didn’t get to see. One group consisted of the mysterious, powerful figures who were rarely seen in public but who could decide the fate of the city, even the entire country. The other group consisted of the laborers who lived in the nooks and crannies and borders of the city.”
“The book contains stories published by Soviet science-fiction writers in the last three or tour years. Ot course, neither the selection of the authors in this little book, nor the stories themselves can offer a comprehensive idea ot Soviet Science fiction, which is so diverse and multiform. At present, more than a hundred Soviet writers are working in the field. Several large story collections, novels and serial books are published each year. Science, philosophy, sociology, humour, satire are some ot their topics. We hope that this book will appeal to the foreign reader and will promote understanding between our nations. The book was published by Mir in 1968.”
TRANSLATED BY KEN LIU, Broken Stars is a welcome second collection of 16 Chinese speculative fiction short stories and three short essays recounting the genre’s recent cultural and academic prominence. The volume gives voice to an eclectic group, serving as a who’s who of SF authors, critics, and other anchors in China’s burgeoning SF culture industry brought to Anglophone audiences by Ken Liu’s deft translation. The eclecticism of these works provides testament to the breadth, allure, and challenges of Chinese-language SF as a genre that miraculously thrives even in the repressive atmosphere of the Xi Jinping era.