Just Speculating: Economics and Speculative Fiction

deadline for submissions: 
April 15, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
Institute of Advanced Studies in the Humanities
contact email: 

On 28 June, IASH is hosting Just Speculating, a one-day symposium reflecting on intersections of finance, data, and culture. As part of the event, we welcome proposals for a panel on economics and speculative fiction. Please send a title, a short proposal (about 100 words) or query, together with a bio or a link to online information about your research, to j.walton@bathspa.ac.uk.

How does speculative fiction represent and reflect on economic life? How do finance, value, exchange, production, and the everyday economic reality of people’s lives appear in speculative fiction? How might speculative fiction contribute to the ongoing evolution of economics? And what might creators of science fiction, as custodians of radical visions of social organisation, learn from economics at this critical moment? Where do economics and utopia meet? We are pleased to invite proposals for papers (15-20 minutes) on the intersection of speculative fiction with any and all themes related to economics, as well as economic history, economic sociology, economic anthropology, economic humanities, finance, political economy, IPE, and other adjacent disciplines and fields. We particularly welcome proposals to explore women's writing and/or writing by BAME authors. 

Some relevant texts might include:

Will Davies (ed.), Economic Science Fictions (https://www.gold.ac.uk/goldsmiths-press/publications/economic-science-fi...)
Eden Medina, Cybernetic Revolutionaries: Technology and Politics in Allende's Chile
Francis Spufford, Red Plenty
J.K. Gibson-Graham, 'Diverse Economies: Performative Practices for "Other Worlds"'
Lionel Shriver, The Mandibles
Eden Medina, Cybernetic Revolutionaries: Technology and Politics in Allende's Chile
Margaret Atwood, Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth
Octavia Butler, Parable of the Sower
Cory Doctorow, Walkaway
Ursula K Le Guin, The Dispossessed: An Ambiguous Utopia
Karen Lord, Galaxy Game
Kim Stanley Robinson, Mars Trilogy
Charles Stross, Neptune's Brood
Starhawk, The Fifth Sacred Thing
Nalo Hopkinson, 'Money Tree'
Tim Maughan, ‘Zero Hours’
Michael Swanwick. 'From Babel's Fall'n Glory We Fled...'
Frederik Pohl, 'The Midas Plague'
Jo Walton, ‘The Panda Coin’

See also http://economicsciencefiction.blogspot.co.uk/

Is mainstream economics in crisis? The discipline is interrogating its own foundations with increasing ferocity. Pressure is growing, from inside economics, and especially from without, to diversify methods and perspectives -- and perhaps even to think thoughts that economics has traditionally deemed unthinkable. In this connection, we would also love to see proposals from contributors from a wide variety of disciplinary backgrounds -- including, of course, economists -- as well as interdisciplinary collaborative work.

Presenters who wish to write up their papers as short articles will also be strongly considered for a special themed issue of the journal Vector.