Theoretical approaches to sf have predominantly focused on the experience that sf offers to its readers/audience. Central terms in this theoretical exploration, like cognitive estrangement (Suvin 1979) or cognitive effect (Freedman 2000), and the emphasis on science and technology underscore the readers’/audience’s co-performance with the sf text in order to achieve the intended affect – wonder and awe, underlined with a critical engagement with the contemporary sociocultural structures. The reader is intended to perform as part of the environment established by the text in a Barthesian sense – as a multiplicity of signifying relations. How we as readers are meant to perform and how these stipulations change in manifestations of sf in different media is one of the questions this working group aims to engage with. In addition, we seek to investigate the theoretical and practical connections between sf and performance theory, looking at ways of thinking science-fictionally, studying contemporary social and cultural moods and attitudes that constitute what Csiscery-Ronay (2008) called science-fictionality, exploring performative futures within current sf methodologies, and thinking about possibilities of sf’s performative utterances.
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