“Vintage Season,” C. L. Moore, 1946

“Vintage Season,” Moore and Kuttner, 1946 – Time travelers who consume “catastrophe” as an aesthetic experience visit a city about to be destroyed by an asteroid.  With them is a composer who will memorialize the event through a 3D “operatic” collage.

Comments: Considered one of the most affecting sf stories of its time on the subject of the bombing of Hiroshima; considered by some to be one of the best sf stories of all time.

An elegant rendering of the consumption of disaster as spectacle by observers at a (temporal) distance. Mark Rose in Alien Encounters provides a short description of “Vintage Season” in the chapter “Time”: the story is “built upon an analogy between temporal and aesthetic distance…[it] becomes a parable of engagement and disengagement, a suggestive exploration of the processes that transform the immediacy of human experience into material for contemplation” (Rose 107-8). 

Author: Wikipedia: “Catherine Lucille Moore (January 24, 1911 – April 4, 1987) was an American science fiction and fantasy writer, as C. L. Moore. She was one of the first women to write in the genre, and paved the way for many other female writers in speculative fiction.”


About jennre

Lifelong sf fan, first-time blogger
This entry was posted in 1946-1959, aesthetics/beauty, artists/creativity, atomic bomb/Hiroshima, catastrophe, distance, emotions/intimacy/empathy, favorites, knowledge/truth/epistemology, music, photo/film/image, spectatorship/voyeurism, the body, the gaze, the Other, time/history/causality, tourists. Bookmark the permalink.

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