[LMB] Heinlein

Peter Hews Peterhews at protonmail.com
Sat Oct 9 15:23:20 BST 2021

On Sunday, October 3rd, 2021 at 04:34, Elizabeth Holden <alzurite at gmail.com> wrote:

> Alayne said:

> > I think he did better than most male authors of that era (SF and non-SF).
> Which is probably why I have read very little SF of that era - or at least,
> the books I read were either by the female authors or the up-and-coming
> writers of a new generation.

It was actually getting better.  When I read Campbell's classic "The Black Star Passes" (1930), by about a quarter of the way through I was thinking there was something odd about it that I couldn't put my finger on.  When I realised what it was I checked, and yes, there are virtually no female characters in the whole book.

Never mind no colleagues or girlfriends, there are no mothers, no sisters, not so much as a cleaning lady or typist.  There is one woman mentioned, but not named, among the victims of the baddie in Book 1, and unless I missed another, that's it.

It's ironic that this is sometimes called "Golden Age" SF, because the Golden Age of the Classical Greeks was imagined as a time when the human race consisted only of men doing jolly boys' stuff, before the gods became jealous of their happiness and created women to spoil it.

Peter Hews

Oh better far to live and die under the brave black flag I fly,
Than play a sanctimonious part with a pirate head and a pirate heart.

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