10: Octavia Butler and Xenogenesis, 1987

The final week represents something of a jump from the emphasis on turn of the century SF. Our focus here shifts to Octavia Butler and specifically her Xenogenesis trilogy. As such, we leap over a great deal of mid-century SF utopianism but can use this week as an opportunity to consider any favourites in relation to Butler’s work. Butler’s vision of utopia might come as a surprise after what we have so far studied, but consider how it engages with and builds on the problems we have identified.

Required Reading:

The Xenogenesis trilogy. Particularly Lilith’s Brood.

Hoda M. Zaki, ‘Utopia, Dystopia, and Ideology in the Science Fiction of Octavia Butler’, Science Fiction Studies 17.2 (1990).

Further Reading:

Jason P. Vest, “Remembering Octavia Butler: A retrospective on the great science-fiction novelist.” The Common Reader, August 28th, 2020.

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