Star Wars – Elements of Science Fiction Definition of SciFi Part II Showcasing Pure Aesthetic Appeal

Star Wars – Elements of Science Fiction Definition of SciFi Part II Showcasing Pure Aesthetic Appeal

I am a professor of Literature at Portland Community College and author of the 2013 Psychedelic-Dystopian novel Supercenter and use of copyright film footage is protected as criticism, educational, non-derivative, non-commercial, transformative work.

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The use of copyrighted footage in this video is protected under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act as a non-commercial, non-derivative creative work of film criticism for educational purposes. See www.copyright.gov for more information.

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SableAradia says:

Last night I watched your "What is Science Fiction?" video and agreed that Star Wars wasn't really sci-fi, but this morning I woke up and I saw what it was that made it science fiction; not the Force (which is pure magic), which would be the flashy fabulist element that you would expect would be the key. But the fabulist technology that impinges upon people's lives is interstellar travel and hyperspace technology. It forces a lot of extremely disparate peoples together, and allows the technology for the formation of the Evil Stellar Empire; the Death Star is the key technology to illustrate that.

The political issues it asked us to confront are not easy for a modern audience to see. One was sexism; Leia is a leader of the Rebel Alliance, not any of the boys, and she was cleverer than all of them in many ways; which was not the way things were done in movies in the 1970s, even in science fiction – if you don't believe me, watch Blade Runner and Soylent Green, for example. The second was racism; ironically, because of the racist overtones that Star Wars has been rightfully called out for; but did you notice that no non-human aliens prospered under the Galactic Empire? The third was the nuclear arms race, which the Death Star, the power to destroy worlds, represented. Even the (infuriatingly bad) prequel movies dealt (badly) with how people allow their civil liberties to be tromped over in order have the illusion of security, which is how Palpatine was elected the Supreme Chancellor in the first place. So I would agree with you that it's barely science fiction, but it is science fiction by your own rules.

I'm enjoying your theories, and discussing/debating them. I hope I'm not coming across like I'm trying to be a jerk. I like being asked to think about these things. Thank you again for a thought-provoking video!

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