BSFA Lecture at Loncon 3

paula-jamesA special BSFA Lecture will be given at Loncon 3 by Dr Paula James (Open Unversity), and is entitled ‘Pygmalion’s Statue and her Synthetic Sisters: The Perfect Woman on Screen′. The lecture will be given at 20.00 on Saturday August 16th, the ExCel Centre, London Docklands. The lecture is open to any member of Loncon 3.

Paula James is a familiar face and voice to anyone who has studied the Open University’s Arts Foundation courses over the past fifteen years or so, or any of their courses in Classical Studies. Paula is Senior Lecturer in Classical Studies and Staff Tutor in Arts at the OU. She began her academic career after raising her family, and joined the Open University in the 1990s. She is an expert in Latin Literature, particularly the Metamorphoses of Ovid and Apuleius. She also writes on the reception of Latin texts in modern cinema. She has written an excellent introduction to Ancient Rome, Understand Roman Civilization, now in its second edition, and has jointly edited works on the imagery of Trade Union banners and the parrot in literature. Her most recent book is Ovid’s Myth of Pygmalion on Screen: In Pursuit of the Perfect Woman (2013), and it is from this work that her talk to us is derived.

The BSFA Lecture is intended as a companion to the George Hay Lecture, which is presented at the Eastercon by the Science Fiction Foundation. Where the Hay Lecture invites scientists, the BSFA Lecture invites academics from the arts and humanities, because we recognise that science fiction fans aren’t only interested in science. The lecturers are given a remit to speak “on a subject that is likely to be of interest to science fiction fans” – i.e. on whatever they want! This is a special lecture for Worldcon, and is the seventh BSFA Lecture.

Frances Hardinge interview and panel now online

0330519735.02.LZZZZZZZEarlier this month Frances Hardinge was the BSFA’s guest at the AGM/Minicon jointly held with the Science Fiction Foundation. Transcripts of her interview with Tom Pollock and a panel item with Frances, Niall Harrison, Farah Mendlesohn and Virginia Preston are now online at Strange Horizons. Thanks to Niall and his SH team for arranging the transcription and hosting these, and thanks of course to Frances for being an excellent guest.

2014 BSFA Lecture

The 2014 BSFA Lecture at Eastercon will be given by Dr Sara-Patricia Wasson (Edinburgh Napier Unversity), and is entitled ‘Trade in flesh and tears: some science fictions of organ harvest′. The lecture will be given at 1.00 pm on Saturday April 19th, in Argyll 2 of the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Glasgow. The lecture is open to any member of Eastercon.

Sara-Patricia Wasson is Senior Lecturer in Literature and Culture at Edinburgh Napier University.  She is author of Urban Gothic of the Second World War: Dark London (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010), which won the Allan Lloyd Smith Memorial Prize of the International Gothic Association, and co-editor of Gothic Science Fiction 1980-2010 (Liverpool University Press, 2011).  She has a special interest in literary depictions of organ harvesting and tissue economies, and her talk to us is based on this work.

The BSFA Lecture is intended as a companion to the George Hay Lecture, which is presented at the Eastercon by the Science Fiction Foundation. Where the Hay Lecture invites scientists, the BSFA Lecture invites academics from the arts and humanities, because we recognise that science fiction fans aren’t only interested in science.  The lecturers are given a remit to speak “on a subject that is likely to be of interest to science fiction fans” – i.e. on whatever they want!  This is the sixth BSFA Lecture.

SFF Masterclass still accepting applications

The SFF are still accepting applications for the 2014 Science Fiction Foundation Masterclass, an enriching experience for anyone interested in improving their writing about Science Fiction and Fantasy. Please send a sample of writing and a one-page cv to farah.sf@gmail.com.

Please share this as widely as possible. Thanks.

Eighth SFF Criticism Masterclass 2014

The Eighth Science Fiction Foundation Masterclass in Science Fiction Criticism will be held from Monday 11 August 2014 to Wednesday 13 August, immediately before Loncon 3, the 2014 World Science Fiction Convention.

The SFF Masterclass involves three days studying texts supplied by three class leaders.  It is a great way to broaden your critical perspectives, sharpen some critical tools, and to make contacts with other people writing on SF and Fantasy.  The class leaders are drawn from professional writers, academics and fans, and this is a great opportunity to learn from people experienced in their craft.
Anyone interested in writing seriously about science fiction and/or fantasy, at whatever level they are in their careers, is welcome to attend.  This includes not just critics and reviewers, but historians and other scholars.  Those who have attended past Masterclasses are also welcome to apply.
Past students have found these events immensely beneficial, and often return.
We are pleased to announce that the venue will be the Royal Observatory, Greenwich, founded by Charles II in 1675, and the home of the Prime Meridian. This is across the Thames from the Excel site where Loncon3 will take place. Price: £200.
The tutors for 2014 will be:
Andy Duncan, Professor of English at Frostburg State University, Frostburg MD, winner of the Theodore Sturgeon Award and two World Fantasy Awards, and winner of the 2012 Nebula Award for Best Novelette.
Neil Easterbrook, Professor of English at the Texas Christian University, and a prolific reviewer and critic, whose monograph on China Miéville is due to be published in 2014.
K.V. Johansen, a Canadian writer of fantasy, science fiction, and children’s fiction, who has also published three books on the history of children’s fantasy. Her adult novel Blackdog was shortlisted for the Sunburst Award in 2012.
You can find some reports on previous Masterclasses on the Facebook page.
Please apply to farah.sf@gmail.com. Send a short piece of critical writing, and a one page cv. Deadline for Applications: February 28th 2014

Swords, Sorcery, Sandals and Space: The Fantastika and the Classical World. A Science Fiction Foundation Conference

29 June – 1 July 2013

At The Foresight Centre, University of Liverpool
Guests of Honour/Plenary Speakers: Edith Hall, Nick Lowe, and Sophia McDougall

The culture of the Classical Medoiterranean world continues to shape that of the modern West.  Those studying the Fantastika (science fiction, fantasy and horror) know that the genres have some of their strongest roots in the literature of the Graeco-Roman world (Homer’s Odyssey, Lucian’s True History).  At the same time, scholars of Classical Reception are increasingly investigating all aspects of popular culture, and have begun looking at science fiction.  However, scholars of the one are not often enough in contact with scholars of the other.  This conference aims to bridge the divide, and provide a forum in which sf and Classical Reception scholars can meet and exchange ideas.

Progamme

http://swordssorcerysandalsspace.wordpress.com/2013/06/03/conference-programme/

Registration
The rate for a delegate (whether full or unwaged) includes lunch, coffee breaks, and the banquet on Saturday.  Day rates are available for those unable to attend the full event. Note that you will only be able to purchase one day at a time using the form on the webpage. The Saturday day rate does not include the banquet. Spaces may be available for an additional UK £15. Day delegates should note their interest in attending the banquet in the “dietary needs” field.
Delegate UK £150
Delegate (unwaged/student) UK £100
Day rate UK £50
Day rate (unwaged/student) UK £40
The deadline for registering online is 6 pm BST on the 17th of June.
Card payments for the conference are made directly to the Science Fiction Foundation (SFF) and will be processed via PayPal (no account required).
If you have problems using the registration interface, please email sworthen@owlfish.com with questions.
Accommodation

Bursaries

A small number of bursaries are available to reimburse the cost of travel to and from the conference within the UK for students currently enrolled on a postgraduate degree programme. The form for applying for one is available here (.docx): http://swordssorcerysandalsspace.wordpress.com/2013/05/19/conference-bursaries/

Swords, Sorcery, Sandals and Space is organised by the Science Fiction Foundation, with the co-operation of the School of Archaeology, Classics and Egyptology at the University of Liverpool.

For more information, see the Conference blogConference Facebook Page and Conference Twitter Feed.