The Knowable Other is now the fourth panel* I'll be on at LonCon. It's on Saturday, starting at 19:00, and ending at 20:00 in the London Suite 2 (ExCeL).
The updated blurb for this panel is as follows:
SF has a long history of alien Other characters that function as representations of identities that depart from the dominant paradigm of white, male heterosexuality. Many of these have been problematic: such Others were kept distant and "unknowable", allowing them to be quarantined within a conventionally heroic narrative framework. In recent films and TV shows, however, we see more characters who fulfil the role of Other while being rooted in humanity in some way, such as the rebooted Cylons of Battlestar Galactica, the androids of Almost Human, or the undead of The Returned. Such characters can be seen as more "knowable", lacking the distance of conventional aliens.
What does this shift mean for the exploration of marginalised identities on screen, at a time when we're also seeing more (if still not enough) actual representations of such identities in heroic roles? What are the advantages and disadvantages of human-seeming characters, and what is the impact of presenting them -- all too often -- as antagonists? Is there still a space for new visually alien characters, or are they inevitably tainted by the history that precedes them?
Viktoriya H (Moderator), Michael Morelli, Justina Robson, JY Yang, and me.
I have updated the LonCon Panel 1: The Retrofuturism of JJ Abrams post with location, and a change of panelists too.
Also I've added the location for LonCon Panel 2: 2014 Hugos: Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form panel too.
* Yes, this means I'm on another panel, which I'm totally stoked to have been asked to do. More details in a separate post.