John Gray on Science Fiction

A good piece on science fiction in the New Statesman by jobbing philosophical curmudgeon John Gray. His assessment of Ballard’s ‘pivotal’ role is accurate, but the claim that China Mieville’s fiction does not reflect his socialist politics is a revealing moment of blindness. Iron Council may be set in a universe of cactus people, spider gods and necromantic warfare, but if it’s not a brilliant exploration of revolutionary praxis I’m a slake moth. Suck it and see.


3 thoughts on “John Gray on Science Fiction

  1. Yeah, it’s almost as if he hadn’t read the Iron Council. One of the commentators noted that Vernor Vinge’s work might also counterexemplify them (though I think Grey might argue that Vinge’s better works are more fantasy than sci. fi.).

    Dan Simmons’ two great Endymion trilogies are the biggest counterexamples I can think of. Without being badly didactic they clearly contrast a corrupt monotheistic philosophy and culture with a more ecologically attuned one, presenting the latter as a clear counter to the way we seem to be going. They’re great books too.

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