Beyond Victoriana Special Edition Odds & Ends #6

Work has been hectic as of late, and I’m also in the midst of preparing for Dragon*Con. I don’t have as much new stuff planned out for this week as I had hoped, but have you checked out my essay series about multiculturalism in steampunk yet? And see the links below for more good things to read/watch/run in the streets shouting about.

The Reads

Image courtesy of io9

This isn’t entirely steampunk, but the following set of articles deals a lot with the history of Chinese pulp fiction and its political implications, so I thought it would be more than fascinating to include here. Over in the greater sci-fi realm, there’s been a lot of buzz about the underground novel The Gilded Age: China 2013 (Shengshi Zhonguo 2013). io9 wrote an exclusive about it, and then announced that it will be published in the US next year. Foreign Policy magazine then wrote an article about how Chinese sci-fi has always been political, and Jess Nevins (editor of the Encyclopedia of Fantastic Victoriana among other things) has an article about Chinese pulp in the latest issue of Coilhouse magazine.

Over at Edwardian Promenade, there is a profile on Lutie Lytle, the first black lawyer to practice in the American South and an interesting post about Chinese-American Cookery during the Gilded Age.

On the intersection of historical legacy and fashion, Threadbared offers this post about War and the Clothes Brought “Here” from “There.” I included this here since I use ao dai gowns as part of my steampunk wardrobe choices (for personal and political reasons), and because I appreciate how Mimi Thi Nguyen’s article reminds us of the more bloodier circumstances in which cross-cultural exchange can happen.

At Free the Princess, also part of the guest series, Adam Heine wrote about Japanese Steampunk.

I wanted to write a profile on Kent Monkman, but Cory Gross beat me to it; but anyways, I think he does the Native artist better justice than I could.

And a couple new steampunk writing projects that look like they have a lot of potential:

Carolina Free State describes itself as “An alternate history of South Carolina and the Atlantic region based upon the premise that the Yemassee War and the Stono Rebellion were successful and led to a very different development of the Atlantic region both in North America and in western Africa.”

Yunus Yakoub Islam is a UK-based writer currently working on Muslim steampunk novel: you can follow the research for it on The Muslim Age of Steam, and more details about the actual novel planning on the author’s blog.

The Films

Have you seen the trailer for Shaun Tan’s The Lost Thing? With Tan’s playful style incorporating junk art and a strange tentacled creature, this film felt very steampunk to me.

Can Eren, a student at Bilgi University, Istanbul, did a short 15-minute steampunk/diselpunk film called AHNECTHA (“voiceless room”). Very haunting and surreal.

The Pics

Costumer Jeanette Ng runs a blog called The Costume Mercenary, and recently did some lovely eastern steampunk designs she dubbed “ricepunk” (personally, I use the term bamboopunk, but whatever floats your boat.) Nevertheless, her designs are stunning. You can read her profiles about the Ricepunk Traveller and the Buckle Cheongsam on her website.

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