Coursera: Fantasy and Science Fiction (Summer 2012) discussion

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message 1: by Xiri (last edited Sep 23, 2012 12:23PM) (new)

Xiri | 135 comments Hi, since the course is almost over at this point - is there anything that you have taken away from it? Had your understanding or view of the genres changed? Would you like to read something else outside the curriculum? If so, can you recommend anything? And so on...

There was a certain thread in the forums where people cooperated upon what others suggested for a so-called "Unit 11" - quite a few nice readings can be found upon the Professor's site, too.

Must confess I am a pretty recent fantasy "geek" almost, but I am somewhat more familiar with the fairy tales, mythology and classic / Soviet & Russian SF. Out of fantasy I am more into "fairy tales" like ones - Hank C. Andersen, for example - or the so-called Urban / Contemporary one, but my opinion which used to be rather poor had change since I learned more about it, when my boyfriend-to-be convinced me to read "The Lord of The Rings" and I've done some personal background research for a personal project that we tried to collaborate upon :)

P.S. I also used to be a fan of Horror, which could be better called Dark Fantasy & SF, too, when it ain't realistic - primarily Stephen King and Ray Bradbury variety, so majority of the reads to me would have fallen under "Horror" in this course. Then again my genre definitions are weird...


message 2: by Jute (new)

Jute | 113 comments I have read some Science Fiction, but I've always been more of a fan of Fantasy.

I've really enjoyed the course and I'm glad that I've been forced to read some things I'd never read but always felt I should.

The class has made me join a couple of the SF/Fantasy groups here on Good Reads. Where is the professor's site? I should take a look at his recommended reads.


message 3: by Xiri (new)

Xiri | 135 comments Here you go :)

I certainly could not stand "Alice" before - you may bet my opinion has changed. Though I guess age had to do with that, too. It seems that this course was a condensed version of his Fantasy and SF courses, focusing on mostly public domain works.

The Fantasy one, for example, includes a certain Magic Realism work too... have yet to get that genre, tried to Bulgakov's "Master and Margarita" earlier (likely the censored version) and got the feel that it was more of the Carroll's approach to contemporary fantasy, and very literally written, in the sense that it was not as easy to understand as the more usual genre stuff.

I wish more Cyberpunk was covered :( But maybe "Little Brother" will do?


message 4: by Xiri (new)

Xiri | 135 comments Oh, and another thing - the constant repetition of "author lies" or "author's edits", as if the publisher or editors had no decisions over technical matters at all... the shorts, in particular, tend to get re-edited almost each time they are published, according to certain sources.


message 5: by Jute (new)

Jute | 113 comments There are a lot of things I liked about this course...but I have to say the thing I liked the most was getting to know you guys! I am so glad we will continue to have contact in the other group!

Not only do I think you are pretty interesting and wonderful people, but I love the exposure to viewpoints that are outside of my little corner of the world.

Thank you all!


message 6: by Seawood (new)

Seawood Aww. :) Yes, it's been really lovely to get to know you all, I'm so glad we're doing more together.

From the course itself I can see I'm noticing so much more - I started the Vaginal Fantasy book for Oct this morning and in the first few chapters I've thought about authority & control, gender, death...all sorts of things I would have only seen subconsciously before.


message 7: by Jute (new)

Jute | 113 comments Caroline wrote: "Aww. :) Yes, it's been really lovely to get to know you all, I'm so glad we're doing more together.

From the course itself I can see I'm noticing so much more - I started the Vaginal Fantasy book ..."


haha glad to see I'm not the only one!


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