China Mieville’s List of SF&F for Socialists

Over at The Weekly Ansible is science fiction author China Mieville’s list of fifty science fiction and fantasy stories that every socialist should read. It’s an interesting list, especially if you read it as a list of Mieville’s own influences rather than as a guide for a socialist without any prior interest in science fiction or fantasy. (Not to mention there’s a pretty heavy dose of surrealism and other works that are pretty far from canonical SF.)

There’s an intrinsic logic to the idea of the list. Science fiction is the quintessential modern genre (quintessential enough that many SF readers don’t realize just how many of the genre’s assumptions are wrapped up in the idea of modernity, and that most don’t give nearly enough respect to early, and often borderline unreadable, nineteenth-century examples), and socialism—at least as a historical phenomenon—is a similarly modern concept. You can see the connection in many of the books Mieville recommends: Bellamy, Griffith, Morris. Shelley, Wells.

Oh, and there are lots of really good books on the list, too.

(h/t io9)


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