CHAIR: Grant Crichfield, University of Vermont.
CAROLYN RHODES, Old Dominion University, "Method in
Their Madness: Feminism in 'Crazy' Utopian
Two works which dramatize the visionary journeys
of alienated women to better futures are "Your
Faces, Oh My Sisters, Your Faces Filled with
Light," by James Triptree, Jr. (Alice Sheldon)
and Woman on the Edge of Time by Marge Piercy.
The dreads and yearnings of the seer-protagonists
serve to convey the authors' analyses of current
social horrors as well as projected alternatives.
Both of the fantasized futures present new gender
roles as key elements in achieving Utopian peace
and plenty. Such sympathetic projections of
madness as vision and conformity as oppression
show parallels to certain psychiatric critiques of
contemporary life, saliently R. D. Laing's.
LAWRENCE R. BROER, University of South Florida,
"Though This be Madness, Yet There is Method in
it: Narrative Strategy in Vonnegut's Sirens of
Critics who call Vonnegut "pessimistic" fail to
see the essential meaning of his narrative
strategy which undercuts the defeatism of his
characters. Sirens of Titan is more the story of
Malachi's adoption of existential awareness and
his return to psychic wholeness than it is the
story of his madness. He finally realizes that the
Tralfamadorians and all the other imagined
mechanistic forces of control in the novel are
merely projections of his own spiritual potential
for creating a heaven or a hell of the actual
world. He learns that with a little imagination
he can dismantle his own self-imprisoning
machinery and become whatever he chooses.
Session X, Friday,
4 - 5:30 p. m.
SPECIAL SESSION, "Is There A Theory of Fantasy?"
Panelists: SAMUEL R. DELANY, KEYNOTE SPEAKER,
author and critic; Katherine McClenahan, Marquette
University; Gary K. Wolfe, Roosevelt University;
Tom Moylan, University of Wisconsin, Waukesha.
JOE FRANCAVILLA, reading "Memory of Maida," a science
fiction story about an unwilling mortal.
Joe Francavilla teaches creative writing at SUNY,
Buffalo, belongs to both SFWA and SFRA, and has
published in Cinefantastique, Leighdt, Ethos, New
Dimensions 10, and Science Fiction: The
Transcendent Adventure. His first book of fiction
is tentatively titled Vanishing Point.
GREGORY FROST, reading "MacDatho's Pig," an Irish
Greg Frost is another Clarion graduate, whose
first story, "In the Sunken Museum," appeared last
year in The Twilight Zone. He is at present
working on a two volume novel based on ancient
Irish myth. Frost is also an artist, and does
custom-designed T-shirts for Gene Wolfe and others.
THE THEATRUM MUNDI MOTIF AND
CHAIR: Howard Pearce, Florida Atlantic University.
PETER MALEKIN, University
Mundi Motif, the Play
Fantastic in Shakespeare."
of Durham, "The Theatrum
within a Play, and the
The various devices exploring the theatrum mundi
metaphor in Shakespeare's plays constitute a
system of multiple mirrors implicating the
Objectively, this system of mirrors
the psychological and social issues
in playing a role in life. And it
subjectively, the ways in which an
is aware, its mode of consciousness, not
merely what it is conscious of. Whereas As You
Like It, for instance, demonstrates the objective
manifestation of the motif, the great tragedies
probe it through the very consciousness of the
ENRICO QUARTO, Barry College,
"The Carnival of
Luigi Pirandello's Enrico Quarto dramatizes the
evasiveness of the phenomena we perceive as
reality. The pageant and role playing embody
Pirandello's concerns over appearance and reality,
and with Henry IV's madness the pageant becomes an
enduring reality, insanity becomes sanity.
Indeed, Henry IV is superior to his sane
companions in force of personality, in his
insights into himself and his companions. The
"sane" companions' attempt to force Henry IV back
to reality by re-enacting the pageant only produces
multiple layers of confusion and sets the stage
for the final regression into the fantasy of
FRANCIS GILLEN, University of Tampa, '"Horror Shows,
Inside and Outside my Skull': Theatre and Life in
Tennessee Williams' The Two Character Play."
In a play by Tennessee Williams which he
alternately entitled Outcry and The Two Character
Play, Williams uses the
play-within the play to suggest
rational control over the fantastic demons of our
minds. And as Calderon questioned what is life and
what is dream, so Williams uses the convention to
blur the boundaries between theatre and experience.