Hey friends, I hope things have been good. I am currently sitting in my apartment, in my kitchen. (Read: I finally have internet at home!)
So this semester, I have signed up for a science fiction class, and I have to say, it was maybe the best decision I have ever made, scholastically speaking. My teacher is adorable. She’s the complete opposite of what I was expecting- she’s like Betty White. I want to be the teachers pet SO bad!
We spent our first day talking about some of the differences between science fiction/fantasy, and fiction. What is the relationship between the two and how valid or necessary are each? While I’m obviously a huge supporter of the idea that science fiction is a “legitimate” genre, I am intrigued by their relationship. Certainly they are contradictory ideas at their core. Realistic works encourage the reader/viewer to relate, while fantasy aims to make you think outside the box.
Even though they are incompatible, I would still argue that for really quality science fiction you need to have both. Where does the realism belong in science fiction to make it truly relate-able? I think that some of that is necessary in the message or moral of the movie, human struggle is one of the most common themes in most fantasy. But where else? Is it helpful to actually center the plot around a human being? Or perhaps some sort of love story?
I pretty much feel like one could not exist without the other. Is science fiction not simply stylized reality? Without some method of framing our world around us (which is the subject of realism), how could fantastic novels or television even be created?
So, on the subject of co-dependency, how fantastic is realism? Is fiction itself a bit of fantasy; being that it is, by definition, untrue? Even in realistic works- art, movies, writing, anything which isn’t perfectly “normal” is fantasy.
These are some really interesting ideas so I would love to hear your thoughts on them! What movies or books exemplify some of the ideas I’ve discussed? You can also expect a lot more thoughtful entries like this now that I’ve started classes.