Diet Soap Podcast #187: The Fantasies and Representations of a Shattersnipe

The guest this week is the blogger and critic Foz Meadows and we discuss her ideas on Gender, Race, Detectives, and Space ships, ideas she writes about often at Strange Horizons, The Huffington Post, and her own blog called Shattersnipe.

It seems appropriate to talk about race, racism, identity and inequality today, just after the Trayvon Martin murder trial, although the way we go about it in this episode, discussing the cast of characters on Joss Whedon’s cult classic Firefly, and how people of color, gays, and women are represented in books about magic pirates and dragons, well, this may not seem very serious. I’ll just say, in our defense, that our ephemeral pop fantasies are born out of the harsh realities that structure every day life.

Still, I would caution listeners that what’s most important to think about isn’t the isolated details or the attitudes, but rather the structures and mechanisms that bring these attitudes into being. Every genre has its logic, whether the genre is high fantasy, a police procedural, or a real life instance of racial profiling and murder.

My Kickstarter campaign was successfully funded this week. There were 87 backers in all and this week I want to thank Henry W, Derick Varn, Anna W, James G, Cathy K, Kurt O, Aquila H, Jennifer L, Daniel Coffeen, Ray P, my agent Kristopher O’Higgins, James K, John K, Reagan S, Ken Beare, Aaron W, Jason H, William C, Kwame A, Kara B, Jon M, Paul H, Akwhistler, Douglas Lain Sr, Mark B, and Maxx B.

The Think the Impossible Tour will be starting in late August, right after my book Billy Moon comes out from Tor. I’ll be producing podcasts at each stop and, hopefully, meeting a lot of you who are listening from San Francisco, Chicago or New York.

There are several clips in this episode. There are clips of Richard Pryor discussing how blacks and whites behave differently at funerals, a clip from an video about Gustave Courbet, a clip from a BBC interpretation of Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple, a bit of dialogue and the theme song from the Rockford Files, and finally, at the end, a clip from Doug Henwood’s terrific program Behind the News. Henwood can be heard in conversation with Adolph Reed about a movie called The Help. dietsoap187

Diet Soap Podcast #183: Hegel’s Serenity

There is no guest this week except for my son Benjamin. He and I discuss the Joss Whedon 2005 film Serenity and the television series Firefly that spawned it through the context of Hegel’s dialectic.

It’s Wednesday, June 12th, 2013 and I’m Douglas Lain the host of the podcast.

You may have noticed that my Kickstarter project to fund a book and podcast tour in September is underway. The project is just one week in, and largely due to a large pledge from Andy M, I’m already over 40% toward the goal. At present there are 19 backers of the Think the Impossible tour. Thanks to Thom K, Thomas A, Trent W, MK Hobson, Shane S, Ashley F, Andy M, Derek D, Bradley C, Filippo V, James M, Sarah C, Randy S, Bob B, Jody, Will S, McKenzie Wark, Robert K, and Cameron Pierce.

If you like Diet Soap pledging to the Think the Impossible tour is a great way to support it.

In related news I’ve started a serialized audio version of my upcoming novel Billy Moon. It’s a freebie that I’m giving away through the Kickstarter campaign, and to I’ll post a link to the first chapter in this week’s show notes.

Again, this week’s podcast is about Hegel and the tv show Firefly. Ben was a good sport to participate. You can hear that he’s got a bit of cold but he just put his head down and powered through. The music you’re listening to right now is from the television show Firefly, it’s the theme for River’s perception, but in just a moment you’ll be listening to Ben and I discuss Hegel’s Serenity.