Saturday, August 7, 2010

Misfits of Science

That was a TV show back in 1985 that may have been the first appearance of Courtney Cox.  But what I want to write about is the Misfits of Science Fiction. 
I have been posting a number of essays about misfits in juvenile SF books.  I am going to continue to do that, and also some posts are planned for the general topic of misfits in SF including adults. 
But the subject of this post is the idea of SF as the literature of misfits, and the place of misfits in society. 
There are many people who would qualify as misfits in the world today.  The computer nerd has become a clich√© and, incorrectly, I think society has begun to believe that misfits are taking over the world. 
There have been headlines and articles in the media to this point.  But, while Bill Gates may have been a misfit/ computer nerd he really is just an updated version of the ruthless robber baron type of businessman.  He is a “success” by societies definitions.  Whether or not he is a real misfit is debatable.
I am not saying that you can’t be a success eventually if you are a misfit.  Some people do persevere and get ahead. 
But most do not.  And that has implications for society and the world.  Since, as I have said in early posts, I think it is the misfits that are the reason for progress and change, not the conformist drones or ‘mundanes’ out there. 
I remember a book by Isaac Asimov that made this point, I just don’t remember which one of his 500+ books it was.  He said that a huge majority of scientists read SF and that was an important indicator of intelligence and scientific prowess in the youth of the world. 
I have a related, but different point to make.  In one of my other blogs I have been ranting about how society consists of sheep and wolves, etc. and the small group of people, like me, who are not part of the victims or the predators of the world.  This group however large or small it is, is important.  At least to me since I belong to it.  But I think overall it's important. 
I am going to explore, here and in my other blogs this idea.  That somehow or other this group of people as I have defined them (I still haven’t come up with a good name for them) needs to change its place in society.  Maybe by withdrawing from the world in some way. 
And maybe, if I ever start writing SF, that’s where I can explore that idea.  And maybe even get paid for it?  Ah well, dream on. 
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