From the Vice President


SFRA Review, vol. 51, no. 1

From the SFRA Executive Committee


From the Vice President

Sonja Fritzsche
Michigan State University


As I enter my final year as Vice President, I continued to be thrilled and honored to serve in a professional society where such innovative work is being done by its members, and those members continue to create such a supportive and creative, scholarly space for all even in the middle of a pandemic. We are all dedicated to furthering the study of science fiction and its associated scholarly communities in all corners of the globe and in all languages. For this very reason, I too would like to echo Gerry Canavan’s statement of apology for lack of diversity on the original conference keynote line-up. We failed and must always remain vigilant in these matters as it is never enough what we are doing. I am looking forward to the virtual conference this summer for that very reason as it will be accessible to a greater variety of scholars than ever before.

The SFRA Conference 2021 proposal deadline is April 1, 2021. In the spirit of its theme—“The Future of/as Inequality”—please consider helping new scholars who are working on science fiction by Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) by organizing panels on topics they are working on. Senior scholars need to help with the organizational labor to make this happen. Note too that part of the conference will take place on Juneteenth also known as Emancipation Day, a holiday that celebrates the freeing of the slaves in the United States. Seeing as BIPOC is perhaps a US-American context phrase, please consider adapting the spirit of it to your own country’s/region’s linguistic, cultural, and historical context to contribute to the theme. If you are looking for contacts, please reach out to the ever-growing number of SFRA Country Representatives.  We are so thankful for Graham Murphy of Seneca College in Toronto, Canada who is hosting the virtual conference.  Be sure to submit your 300-500 word abstracts to Graham (graham.Murphy@senecacollege.ca) or through the Abstract Submission form by the deadline. Please pass the cfp on to scholars who you think would be interested! Each new location brings the promise of new contributions and members to SFRA! Propose a panel that includes someone who has never attended an SFRA before to bring them into a broader conversation.

If you are an SFRA member and interested in becoming an SFRA Country Representative, please contact me (fritzsc9@msu.edu). More details are on the website. We have been meeting every three months by Zoom. The conversations are engaging, illuminating, and productive across many time zones.  Please also send me your announcement for the SFRA Facebook and Twitter accounts. I’m happy to pass them on or feel free to post yourself!

From the Vice President


SFRA Review, vol. 50, no. 4

From the SFRA Executive Committee


From the Vice President

Sonja Fritzsche
Michigan State University


The SFRA Support a New Scholar Grant deadline has just closed on November 15, 2020 for the graduate student competition. For those interested in the non-tenure track scholar competition look for that call in the early fall of 2021. Since we weren’t able to host a conference, the Student Paper Award has been suspended for this year. But graduate students who present at our conference in summer 2021 – make sure to submit your paper for consideration for this award in in response to the e-mail call that will go out in fall 2021.

We are excited to be discussing plans for an all virtual conference 2021 hosted by Graham Murphy and Seneca College in Toronto. Dates will be announced soon so keep a look out! This will no doubt be one of our most international conferences yet due to the virtual format.

The SFRA Country Representatives have met twice now since the beginning of the fall and are busy sharing information, ideas, and expanding the global network of scholars working on science fiction. We are still looking for representatives as many countries have yet to be represented so don’t be shy and please e-mail me if you are interest (fritzsc9@msu.edu). The current rep list is: http://www.sfra.org/Country-Reps. The job description is as follows:

A SFRA Country Representative facilitates academic communication on science fiction for their specific country to SFRA members, and also passes on SFRA news/events to their own colleagues in country.  Such activities include taking flyers to conferences, posting on SFRA social media (Facebook, Twitter, or Listserve) about conferences, symposia, publishing opportunties, etc. The SFRA News will include a column that will be written by country representatives on rotation. Must be a member of the SFRA.

Look for the information that these country representatives will be sharing so that you can become aware of opportunities near you or on the other side of the globe. The virtual spaces that we occupy now make this type of sharing possible in ways that we could only have imagined just 6 months ago. Our next meeting is in early January 2021. Country representatives will also be writing a contribution for the SFRA Review so look for this new addition to find out a more detailed account of work going on in a particular country. Also don’t forget to pass on information to me if you want me to post an event or cfp for you on Facebook and Twitter. I’m always open to other suggestions and ideas as to how we can help to promote the work of our colleagues in the SFRA.

From the Vice President


SFRA Review, vol. 50, no. 2-3

From the SFRA Executive Committee


From the Vice President

Sonja Fritzsche
Michigan State University


Greetings to everyone! I hope that this issue of the SFRA Review finds you healthy and safe. What strange times we find ourselves in, very science fictional, and all too real for many of us who are confronting multiple challenges. I am reminded of Poet Damian Barr’s poem on the COVID-19 crisis that begins: “We are not all in the same boat. We are all in the same storm. Some are on super-yachts. Some have just the one oar.” We all need to consider the disparate impacts the pandemic is having on specific demographics—race, ethnicity, age, gender, disability/medical conditions, and a variety of family configurations. Please think of these as you engage with your colleagues, science fictional and otherwise. Have patience and be patient with yourself and those around you, as we all do not always recognize or acknowledge the stress we are truly under.

Under normal conditions, we would be celebrating now yet another successful conference at Indiana University with Rebekah Sheldon, De Witt Douglas Kilgore, and their colleagues, but this novel virus intervened. We hope that they will volunteer again in the future so that we can visit the beautiful rolling Hoosier hills. I already have the 2021 conference on my calendar, which will take place at Seneca College in Toronto, Canada with generous host Graham Murphy. We are already in talks regarding the potential for in-person and virtual options for the conference, so stay tuned for more information as it comes available. Congratulations to all of the winners of the 2019 Awards! All very well deserved!

So far we have a number of SFRA Country Representatives and you can find their contact information on the SFRA website under that category at the top. Thank you to all who have contacted me so far. It is not too late to volunteer, so please contact me. We will also be having a virtual meeting soon to brainstorm across countries how these representatives would like to be advocating for the study of science fiction in their countries and how the SFRA might help these efforts. Again it is possible for a country to have more than one liaison, so if you are interested, please contact me at fritzsc9@msu.edu.

Please also continue to pass on your announcements and any cfps that you would like to have posted on the SFRA Facebook or Twitter pages.

From the Vice President


SFRA Review, vol. 50, no. 1

From the SFRA Executive Committee


From the Vice President

Sonja Fritzsche
Michigan State University


It is out! Check out the call for papers for the SFRA 2020 conference at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. The theme is Forms of Fabulation. Questions and abstract submissions should be sent by March 15, 2020 to SFRA2020IU@gmail.com. See the website for any questions concerning the conference, logistical or otherwise. You can also contact our intrepid conference hosts Rebekah Sheldon rsheldon@indiana.edu and De Witt Kilgore dkilgore@indiana.edu. Consider submitting a paper, or even better, organize a panel or a series of panels! Send in your abstracts!

Yes, IU will give society members a big Hoosier welcome from July 8-11, 2020 this summer! For those of you who have not spent time in this fair city, it is a beautiful drive between Indianapolis and B-town, only 1 hour south. It has developed a wonderful restaurant culture over the past twenty years. For you cycling buffs, the film Breaking Away was filmed here. The Memorial Union building is one of a kind in the center of a wooded campus and a winding river where many superior conversations on science fiction will be had! Make sure you take a walk and explore.

It is also exciting to say that SFRA has committed to a site for the 2021 conference at Seneca College in Toronto, Canada to be hosted by Graham Murphy. SFRA also has a location for the 2022 conference! This will be at the University of Oslo in Oslo, Norway generously to be hosted by Bodhisattva Chattopadhyay. Thanks to everyone who has committed to host in such exciting locations.

We have a growing list of country reps. For more information, select the “country reps” menu on the SFRA website. I’m going to organize a get-together for country reps who are able to attend the conference, so that we can touch base on strategies, initiatives, and other ways that the SFRA can support the reps and they can support each other and the science fiction network in their countries. If you are interested in being a representative, please contact me at sfritzsc9@msu.edu.