Something I was reminded of:
Nobody ever talks about the problematic elements in the source material for Steampunk.
I tried to bring it up at a Steampunk-themed convention and got crickets and a room full of stinkeye. Nobody wanted to be reminded that one of the core tropes of the genre was White Male Is A Genius And Builds A Gadget/Robot, Then Goes And Conquers Those PoC Over There And Then Steals Their Treasures.
And damaging Victorian worldviews, morality, and social mores.
And these things DO leak into the revival of Steampunk. Or Neo-Steampunk. Or whatever we want to call it.
And people either don’t know the history of the genre or, if they do, they want to ignore it all.
LET ME THROW LINKS AT YOU
Silver Goggles - “Worn by the steampunk postcolonialist when engaging with issues of race, representation, diversity, and other such exciting adventures as one might find in our genial genre”
Beyond Victoriana - “the oldest-running blog about multicultural steampunk and retro-futurism—that is, steampunk outside of a Western-dominant, Eurocentric framework.”
Ay-Leen the Peacemaker makes zines about antifascism, asian-americans and anti-King Coal activism in steampunk.
Nisi Shawl is writing a steampunk novel set in the Belgian Congo (I LOVE HER)
(tl;dr I love all these people, and I will really be sad to miss WisCon this year)
Thanks so much for the rec! Let me throw some more at you:
Steampunk Magazine: THE first magazine about steampunk, founded by anarcho-anarchist Magpie Killjoy. They are very much into discussing the -“isms” of steampunk, and are actively pro-social justice and stuffs.
Steampunk Emma Goldman — Putting the politics into your steampunk and steampunk into your politics. And her Facebook too is worth a follow.
The Chronicles of Harriet — On the forefront of steamfunk, African/African-American steampunk, run by Balogun Ojetade
moniquill aka Monique Poirier, social justice blogger, Seaconke Wampanoag steampunk
jhameia aka Jaymee Goh — Owner of Silver Goggles. This be her tumblr.
There are other steampunks who are politically-conscious and want to talk about that. Many of them answered my question about steampunk & politics here: http://beyondvictoriana.tumblr.com/post/47042618748/what-role-do-feminism-and-queer-politics-have-in
Other folks, feel free to shout-out here too!