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2017 SFF Masterclass – places still available

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JOIN US AT THE ELEVENTH SCIENCE FICTION FOUNDATION MASTERCLASS IN SCIENCE FICTION CRITICISM!

Three days of extremely enjoyable discussion and exchange of ideas and in the delightful environment of the Royal Observatory Greenwich, the Masterclass is highly valued by past students. Places are still available on a first come-first served basis. Applications welcomed from Past Masterclasses students.

To apply please send a short (no more than 3,000 words) piece of critical writing (a blog entry, review, essay, or other piece), and a one page curriculum vitae, to masterclass@sf-foundation.org.

For more details, see: http://www.sf-foundation.org/node/228

2017 Science Fiction Foundation Masterclass in SF Criticism – Applications open

Applications are now open for the 2017 Science Fiction Foundation Masterclass in Science Fiction Criticism. The 2017 Masterclass, the Eleventh, will take place from Friday 30 June to Sunday 2 July. We are delighted to have once again secured at the Royal Observatory Greenwich as a venue.

The 2017 Class Leaders are:

Nick Hubble (Brunel University)

John J. Johnston (Egypt Exploration Society)

Stephanie Saulter (author of Gemsigns and sequels)

Price: £225; £175 for registered postgraduate students.

To apply please send a short (no more than 3,000 words) piece of critical writing (a blog entry, review, essay, or other piece), and a one page curriculum vitae, to masterclass@sf-foundation.org.

Applications received by 24 April 2017 will be considered by an Applications Committee. Applications received after 24 April may be considered if places are still available, on a strictly first-come first served basis.

Past Masterclass students are encouraged to apply again (though we will prioritise applications from those who have not been previous students).

Information on past Masterclasses can be found at http://www.sf-foundation.org/masterclass. Please direct any enquiries to masterclass@sf-foundation.org.

Tony Keen, SFF Masterclass Administrator

Brett Rogers and Ben Stevens win prestigious award

This is worth breaking silence on this blog for.

Brett Rogers and Ben Stevens have won the Society for Classical Studies Outreach Prize, for their work promoting research into classical traditions in modern science fiction and fantasy, most obviously in their books Classical Traditions in Science Fiction and Classical Traditions in Modern Fantasy, and the conference ‘The Once and Future Antiquity’, as well as various articles and blog posts and other activities at their universities.

This news I think really shows that our research subject has arrived, and is taken seriously.

Urgent call for paper on Classics and Star Wars

Classicists (and possibly SF people around Canterbury): I am putting together a proposal for a Star Wars and Classical Antiquity panel for the Classical Association in April (https://www.kent.ac.uk/secl/classics/news/?view=6250), and have just had a speaker drop out. Would anyone like to be part of this? If so, please send me (a.g.keen@open.ac.uk) a 200-word abstract by close of play tomorrow (30 August), as the deadline for submitting panels is 31 August. Please note speakers must register for the conference, and I have no funding to support attendance.

Warsaw Conference

Just starting in a few hours is a conference in Warsaw on “Chasing Mythical Beasts… The Reception of Creatures from Graeco-Roman Mythology in Children’s & Young Adults’ Culture as a Transformation Marker”. You can download the programme booklet here, which makes clear that it is packed full of discussions of modern children’s fantasy, so directly relevant to what this blog is interested in.

Also there’s a Tumblr post here about Amazons in the forthcoming Wonder Woman movie.

Ninth Science Fiction Foundation Masterclass in Science Fiction Criticism 2015

The Ninth Science Fiction Foundation Masterclass in Science Fiction Criticism will be held from Friday 17 July to Sunday 19 July 2015

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 (though we will prioritise applications from those who have not been previous students).
Past students have found these events immensely beneficial, and often return.  For some reports and endorsements from past students and class leaders, see the Facebook page for the Masterclass;
We are pleased to announce that the venue will again be the Royal Observatory, Greenwich, founded by Charles II in 1675, and the home of the Prime Meridian.
Price: £200£150 for registered postgraduate students.
The Class Leaders for 2015 will be:
Pat Cadigan, multiple Clarke and Hugo Award-winning author of Synners and Fools, and Official Queen of Cyberpunk.
Nick LoweBSFA Award-winning critic and writer of Interzone‘s ‘Mutant Popcorn’ column.
Graham Sleight, Hugo Award-winning Managing Editor of the Science Fiction Encyclopedia.
To apply please send a short (no more than 3,000 words) piece of critical writing (a blog entry, review, essay, or other piece), and a one page curriculum vitae, to masterclass@sf-foundation.org.  Applications received by 28 February 2015 will be considered by an Applications Committee consisting of Tony Keen, Andy Sawyer and Kari Sperring. Applications received after 28 February may be considered if places are still available, on a strictly first-come first served basis.
Information on past Masterclasses can be found here.

New stuff you need to know

Forgive me for I have sinned. It has been far too long since I blogged at this site. And there are things you need to know (and not just that Atlantis is back …)

First off, there will be another conference on Classics and Science Fiction, this time in the US, organized by Brett Rogers and Ben Stevens.  The Once and Future Antiquity: Classical Traditions in Science Fiction takes place 27-29 March 2015. The deadline for the call for papers is 15 December 2015.

Speaking of Brett and Ben, their collection Classical Traditions in Science Fiction should be out by the end of the year (the OUP website says October 2015, but that seems to be wrong). This will be followed by Classical Tradtions in Fantasy. Meanwhile, the proceedings of the 2012 Paris-Rouen conference have come out:  L’Antiquité dans l’imaginaire contemporain – Fantasy, science-fiction, fantastique, edited by Mélanie Bost-Fievet and Sandra Provini. This is an important volume, not least because it demonstrates that not all important works on Classical Reception are anglophone. Some pieces from Swords … are also starting to appear. Liz Gloyn’s and Stephe Harrop’s papers from the Hadrian’s Wall session are on Strange Horizons. And Foundation 118 is mostly devoted to a special issue reprinting six papers from the conference. Fantasy author Juliet McKenna, a Classics graduate herself, has written about this issue.

I’m very pleased that there is now more material appearing in print discussing the intersection of Classics and SFF. For too long these have been conversations going around – now finally the products of these conversations are starting to appear, and we can point people making enquiries of us at actual bibliography.

There are a few reports of the conference that I haven’t mentioned: Liz Bourke in Strange Horizons, Chris Pak in the SFRA Review, and myself and Cat Wilson in Foundation 116. I also talked about the conference on Classics Confidential.

Back in October there was a talk in Leeds on Greece and Rome in Star Trek. The audio should become available soon. Other interesting pieces on this blog include Malcolm Heath on the location of Atlantis, Bev Scott on George Lucas (not yet uploaded), and Eleanor OKell on The Hunger Games.

I shall leave you with notice of a conference that may be of interest to readers of this blog: Sideways in Time: Alternate History and Counterfactual Narratives. The CFP for this also closes on 15 December.