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Friday, April 23, 2010

Haul of Books 2010: Stuff For Me v.2

Time for another edition of the Haul of Books. Since I'm playing catchup for 2010, a lot of these are either old news for me, or just things I forgot to talk about in the last few weeks that I very well should have.

This batch is a mixture of stuff I bought, stuff I snagged at the conference I recently attended, and stuff that I'm either subscribed to or that came in the mail for whatever reason. Here goes:

Here's some brief descriptions of the images in the picture, moving from left to right, top to bottom.

1. SFRA Review, Winter 2010, #291 (subscribed)
The SFRA Review is available to all members of the Science Fiction Research Association. This particular issue contains a pretty interesting, though sadly brief, article on the New Weird movement (it'll be useful to me, since I'm writing a paper on that very topic). Other elements include professional book and movie reviews for all kinds of things, such as Scott Westerfeld's Leviathan and the movies 9, Zombieland, and loads of others. Obviously it's a little dated now, but it's still a very interesting little magazine.
2. The Journal of American Culture, March 2010, Vol. 33:1 (subscribed)
This is the first issue I have received from them. It contains several academic articles on everything from county fairs to the emergence of outdoor grilling in postwar America, and other things (this was a special themed issue on parties and celebrations in American culture, so the articles clearly lean towards that). There are also a number of book reviews, two essays on media education and American politics, and a lot of interesting stuff to look forward to. Apparently Abe Lincoln is making a come back this year; there are a few books dedicated specifically to honest Abe in this issue.
3. Bull Spec, Issue One (bought online)
I'm going to send you to their website for a description. The table of contents looks interesting, and hopefully I'll get a chance to read this soon.
4. The Journal of Popular Culture, February 2010, Vol. 43, #1 (subscribed)
Another first for me. The articles here are a little more up my alley than those in the American Culture journal above. The articles range from British opera to the film Salem's Lot to Japanese dolls on Western toy shelves. I'll definitely read the Salem's Lot essay soon. Book reviews are, as usual for academic publications such as this, in copious supply, and there are some interesting titles on film noir, Alan Moore, and Japanese horror cinema. Looking forward to this one for sure!
5. Science Fiction Studies, March 2010, Vol. 37, Part One, #110 (subscribed)
I've seen SFS before, but this is the first time I've ever been subscribed. I don't think I'll ever go without it again. As an emerging science fiction scholar, it seems stupid that I have gone so long without this fascinating academic journal filling my mail box.

This particular issue has a section devoted to science fiction and history (apparently as a result of the 2009 SFS Symposium), book reviews for a number of non-fiction books on various aspects of science fiction (pretty much all of them critical works, with the exception of The Routledge Companion to SF, which I suspect is less critical than everything else on the list). The essays seem heavily focused on cyberpunk and issues of selfhood in tech-oriented hacker culture and cyberspace. I've always wanted to spend time looking into cyberpunk, but the problem with that particular genre is that it has either already been mined for ideas, or it has, as a distinct genre, more or less died out in American literary circles (we still read it and elements appear elsewhere, but there are few American cyberpunk writers doing anything of note in that genre). Cyberpunk is still big in the Eastern European bloc, though. Another goodie for my academic brain!
6. FemSpec, 2002, Vol. 3, Issue 2 (bought at the PCA/ACA conference)
I'm new to FemSpec. I've known about it for a while, but I didn't know what kind of journal it was until the PCA/ACA conference. This issue contains fiction from Tananarive Due (who I absolutely love; read "Like Daughter"), and articles on everything from Planet of the Apes, the Empresss of China, utopian impulses in Octavia Butler's Parable of the Sower and Parable of the Talents, and even an article by Darko Suvin, who is, if you don't know, one of the foremost science fiction scholars still breathing. I may subscribe to this journal. It seems like one that I need to have filling my academic coffers...
7. The 40th Annual PCA/ACA Conference Program Book (received at the conference)
Not much to say about this one. You can't buy it anywhere. It contains all of the programming for the entire conference, along with contact information for pretty much everyone that was there (it's a long list) and other nifty information (there are some advertisements in there too, and contact information for professional purposes).
There you go. Did you get anything interesting this week? Let me know in the comments!

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