Tweet of the Day: The Politics of Science Fiction
If you, like me, exists in the world of writers and their books, you might have heard about the #WeNeedDiverseBooks social media campaign. It is a simple campaign directed at the book industry, from authors to publishers and libraries to write, publish and stock books with diverse casts, backgrounds and with People of Colors and other minorities. The focus is on books for young children and young adults, books that reflect not only a majority view on the issues of race and sexuality but engage young readers across a wide spectrum of social and historical issues.
But this is not a new issue, just a new way to tackle it. I’ve written about this issue from different angles: how to write “strong” female characters, the folly of assigning strength/weakness to masculinity/femininity and the difficulties of writing about the Other. How we should allow diverse voices to speak for themselves. And while I applaud the folks behind this campaign I fear it will be another flash in the pan. Another topic of discussion, because getting people talking may be hard, but once they start they won’t shut up, because doing something about it is even harder.
It is a start, a good start, but where do we go from here?
How do we beyond tokenism or queer bating or so many other traps that befall all of others when confronted by the now unavoidable Other?
These are important questions with difficult answers. But we are at the precipice of change and that change will come in the form of our answers.