NYT Discovers Steampunk (More Than Just Shiny, Happy Goths)

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By Neal

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So, I emailed Paul Di Filippo this morning, any “what hath I wrought?” feelings after reading this morning’s NY Times feature on steampunk? The Times credits the science fiction author with naming the subculture, which has spread from literature to fashion, via a collection of novellas published in 1995, which you should totally track down and read. “Now I have to watch for assassins sent by K.W. Jeter, actual coiner of the term,” he quipped. It’s true: Jeter coined the term back in 1987 to describe a wave of sci-fi novels with Victorian-era settings, among which one might recommend, off the top of one’s head, William Gibson and Bruce Sterling‘s The Difference Engine and Tim Powers‘s The Anubis Gates. (If you’ve got more recommendations, don’t keep them to yourself.)

Beyond that, Di Filippo asks, “Where’s my gold-plated, coal-powered Orgasmatron?” Good question. After reading the article, mine is: Is anybody really watching the film of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, which is pretty godawful, or are they heading straight for the comic book?

(photo: Robert Wright/NYT)