Saturday, December 04, 2004

Sygns of the Family?

I have started reading Samuel Delany. Started for a class - Triton was on the syllabus (actually, Trouble on Triton, but I had an old Bantam paperback on hand, and figured I'd save a couple bucks. I don't know what that lost me - a Kathy Acker introduction, which may or may not be worth the expense - and possibly something at the back? I compared them - they both had the appendices, and they looked alike - but are they? I have heard rumors of something by Leslie K. Steiner - a Delany alter ego - in the new version - but is it so? I am haunted...)

I've lost the plot. This is the point. I started reading Triton for a class - read it - liked it, very much (did I love it? in a way. But Delany is an odd case - I have tried reading his science fiction in the past, and not been able to keep at it; something about the self-consciousness of it, makes it, somehow, seem smug - he's too good - and somehow too smug about what he's doing... But that's not fair,a nd part of the point of this post is to note how I lost that feeling.) (So did I love it? in a sense - yes - but Delany's books tend to split, a bit - on one side, a text - sentences running together, creating a story and a world and people - all of this utterly engaging; on the other side something of a treatise on Science Fiction, or The Paraliterary, or, The Novel, or... not that that bothers me as such - I like metafiction as much as the next man, but...)

I can't get this started. And the irony is, originally, I wrote this not to discuss Samuel R. Delany, and still less, my (emotional? or critical?) reaction to him - but because I was reading Delany, and some criticism of Delany, and - coincidentally - via Pandagon - found this: Gender News - a conservative site about gender issues. A week or so ago (getting on to 2 weeks now, I think - I started this note almost a week ago), they had an article up called Deliberate Childlessness: Moral Rebellion With a New Face - which basically says it all. Reading within, one finds:

The church must help this society regain its sanity on the gift of children. Willful barrenness and chosen childlessness must be named as moral rebellion. To demand that marriage means sex--but not children--is to defraud the creator of His joy and pleasure in seeing the saints raising His children. That is just the way it is. No kidding.

With that, I'd say, we are halfway, at least, to the line of thought presented in Stars in My Pocket Like Grains of Sand (which I have started reading in the wake of Triton: (as described in this essay by Earl Jackson Jr..) "In such a circular patriarchal theology, nonreproductive sexuality becomes associated with blasphemous treason." That's not far from what our Gender News writer, R. Albert Mohler, Jr., said - not far at all. The blasphemy part is there. The treason is implied - but those guys (the religious right) are increasingly pushing for a union of blasphemy and treason.

And doing it all in terms that Delany parodied 20 years ago. They're a creepy lot.

(Jackson cite via Long Story, Short Pier - specifically, this post from almost 2 weeks past...)

No comments: