The James Tiptree Award Anthology 2
by Karen Joy Fowler, Pat Murphy, Debbie Notkin, and Jeffrey D. Smith, eds.
Available Format(s): Trade Paperback
Stories for women, for men, and for the rest of us.
Female, male, gay, bisexual, straight, transgender, human, alien, or simply other, the Tiptree Award honors fiction that explores and expands our notions of gender. This anthology includes the most recent Tiptree winners and short-listed stories plus thought-provoking tales from previous years and essays that continue the conversation. As one of the Tiptree judges said, “I’m damned if I know what gender is, but I do know when a story is about it.”
This year’s winners, according to juror Cecilia Tan, “stand completely opposed in so many ways—you could almost say they define the opposite edges of what is conceivable for the Tiptree. Haldeman, the well-known, Hemingway-esque, male, very American, hard SF writer at one end, and Sinisalo, the European, not well known (in the U.S. and within our genre, I mean), female contemporary-fantasy writer at the other.”
Camouflage by Joe Haldeman considers what would happen if a shape-shifting alien predator became, essentially, human. This ageless, sexless entity can take any form. Initially indifferent to gender, the creature faces a gender choice as it grows more human. Haldeman has previously won five Hugo Awards, four Nebula Awards, and the World Fantasy Award.
Johanna Sinisalo’s winning novel was published in the United States as Troll: A Love Story (Grove Press, 2004), in the United Kingdom as Not Before Sundown (Peter Owen, 2003), and in Finland as Ennen päiävanlaskua ei voi (Tammi, 2000). “A deft novel of how human society is ruled by complex territorial relationships,” Cecilia Tan writes of this novel. Sinisalo has previously won the prestigious Finlandia Prize and is known in her home country for her writing for television and comic strips as well as for her science fiction and fantasy.
“James Tiptree was the pseudonym of the late Alice Sheldon, who during a 20-year career of writing gender-bending SF concealed her true identity. The award bearing her name appropriately honors works of fiction that ‘explore and expand gender.’ Unlike other major SF awards conferred by fans and writers’ associations, the Tiptrees are bestowed by a small jury of peers, and the actual prize is something edible, ‘usually chocolate.’ The second annual collection of winners includes stories, novel excerpts, and essays as well as a sampler of Tiptree’s correspondence. The outstanding novel excerpt comes from Joe Haldeman’s Camouflage (2004), about an immortal, shape-shifting alien who alternates between male and female identities, human and animal. Other very noteworthy pieces include Ursula K. Le Guin’s examination of a family unit of two men and two women, and Gwyneth Jones’s essay on why sex and gender create so much confusion. An excellent volume of superior prose that is both intellectually and morally challenging.”
“…the contributions demonstrate a rare gift for interpreting an issue in new and surprising ways. Recommended for most libraries.”
“Imagination blends with science and politics in the second collection offered by SF’s most daring award.”
“Always interesting, habitually provocative, and occasionally stunning….”
—Intergalactic Medicine Show
Karen Joy Fowler, Pat Murphy, Debbie Notkin, and Jeffrey D. Smith are the editors of the James Tiptree Award Anthologies. They are members of the Tiptree Motherboard, a volunteer organization that administers the Tiptree Award at Wiscon, the annual feminist convention in Madison, Wisconsin. The Motherboard won the 2011 Thomas D. Clareson Award for Distinguished Service to science fiction. The Tiptree Award was created by Pat Murphy and Karen Joy Fowler and has been given since 1991 for “works of science fiction or fantasy that expand or explore one’s understanding of gender.”
Praise for The James Tiptree Award Anthology 1
“Here’s what the critics had to say about The James Tiptree Award Anthology 1: immense, surprising and utterly delightful.”
“A superior array of creative and thoughtful writing for both genders.”
Praise for The Tiptree Award Anthology series
“As expected, the writings in this volume are excellent as well as being challenging. It’s hard to pick out favorites, so I won’t try. Just get the book and read them all.”
—Green Man Review
“A trove of fascinating thought.”
“Really worth the ducats….”
Visit the James Tiptree Award website.
Introduction by Debbie Notkin
“All of Us Can Almost” by Carol Emshwiller
“Nirvana High” by Eileen Gunn and Leslie What
“The Brains of Femaile Heyana Twins” by Gwyneth Jones
“Letter to Rudolf Arnheim” by James Tiptree, Jr.
“Kissing Frogs” by Jaye Lawrence
Excerpt from Camouflage by Joe Halderman
Excerpt from Troll: A Love Story by Johanna Sinisalo
“Five Fucks” by Jonathan Lethem
“Talking Too Much: About James Tiptree, Jr.” by Julie Phillips
“The Gift” by L. Timmel Duchamp
“Looking for Clues” Nalo Hopkinson
“Sea of Trolls” by Nancy Farmer
“Congenital Agenesis of Gender Ideation” by Rafael Carter
“Another Story, or a Fisherman of the Inland Sea” by Ursula K. Le Guin