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These are the old archives for Beyond Victoriana blog series, which has now moved to:

The old archives have also been transferred and can be found on the Site Index. Please link back to these posts, and update your bookmarks accordingly.

Note as of April 4, 2017: My Livejournal account has been deleted and so links to LJ have also been removed.

The Index

#1 Technology Eastward DW
#2 The Great Nemo Debate DW
#3 Boilerplate: Readdressing the Victorian Era DW
#4 "For Science!" in the Muslim World DW
#5 The Wild, Wild East DW
#6 A Chat About Brazilian Steampunk with Bruno Accioly DW
#7 Yinka Shonibare MBE: Revealing the Transnationality of Culture DW
#8 Captain Sakuragi's Underwater Warship DW
#9 First Nation Sci-Fi & Technology Resources DW
#10 An Interview with Sunday Driver DW
#11 From One Other to (An)other: Review for Jaclyn Dolamore's Magic Under Glass DW
#12 Sneak Peek at Steampunk Comic "The Seven" DW
Beyond Victoriana Special Edition: Odds & Ends #1 DW
#13 Black Victoriana and Thensome DW
#14 The Wind-Up GirlGuest Review by Jaymee Goh DW
Beyond Victoriana Special Edition: Odds & Ends #2 DW
#15 Ghosts and the MachineA Review of Dan Simmons' Black Hills DW
#16 Post-Apocalyptic Math Musical! The Hidden Sky DW
#17 The Semantics of Words & the Antics of Fashion: Addressing "Victorientalism" DW

& read more at!

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Another great opportunity for donors to the Rising Phoenix Fund, courtesy of the Great New England Steampunk Exhibition!

Abney Park is making their New England premiere at this event and our donors now have a chance at winning FULL WEEKEND PASSES to this convention.

All you have to do is donate to the Rising Phoenix Fund between now and midnight EST on September 9th.  

You can enter in one of two ways: buy any of our three Help Japan buttons (only $2 each) at Button Me Up on Etsy or donate directly to the Rising Phoenix Fund on Shelterbox.

Your information will be automatically entered in our drawing, and the winner will be contacted on September 10th. The winner *must* confirm their acceptance with me within 24-hours, or else another winner will be selected.

In addition for the opportunity to see Abney Park's New England premiere, other guests include:

- Phil & Kaja Foglio of Girl Genius
- Jake von Slatt, maker extraordinaire
- Musical performances by Frenchy & the Punk and Walter Sickert & the Army of Broken Toys and more!
- A full weekend of panels, demonstrations and crafting workshops

Good luck to all of our donors!
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Steampunks in the US Pacific Northwest, we got a special gift for you!

The lovely folks at Portland GEAR Con in Oregon have generously donated two weekend passes and a pledge to the Rising Phoenix Fund.

We will be giving away these tickets FOR FREE to one lucky winner.

Enter giveaway here.

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Tina Wise announced this on her facebook last week, and I'm signal-boosting for folks who are fans of L.A. Bank's work who want to help during this trying time.


From Tina:

It is with profound sadness that we have to inform you that our beloved sister and friend, Leslie Esdaile,
(“L.A. Banks”) is most gravely ill. She is facing an uphill battle in her struggle with serious illness. Please
know that as Leslie needs all of her energy in this fight, she is absolutely not able to receive visitors,
answer emails, texts or phone calls, or receive flowers. What she is able to receive is your continued
Also, Leslie’s medical expenses are mounting at an astronomical rate. If you wish to assist Leslie, a fund
has been established to help with these ever increasing expenses. If you wish to send donations (please
note that donations are not tax-deductible) to help Leslie, please see the information listed below:

Leslie Esdaile Fund
Account #81538801
Police and Fire Federal Credit Union
Operations Center
901 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107-2404

If you live in Philadelphia, PA, you may take donations directly to any Police and Fire Federal Credit
Union branch. Please be sure to note the account number. You may also send them to the P.O. Box
listed below*.

Police and Fire Federal Credit Union Branch Locations:
Main Branch:
901 Arch Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107

Additional Branches:
Leo Mall, 11705 Bustleton Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19116-2515
Davisville Shopping Center, Street Road, Philadelphia, PA
Andorra Shopping Center, Ridge and Henry Avenues, Philadelphia, PA
City Avenue Shopping Center, 7604 City Avenue, Philadelphia, PA, 19151-2007
Mayfair Branch on Frankford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA
Northeast Branch, 7500 Castor Avenue, Philadelphia, PA
Grant and Academy Shopping Center Branch, Philadelphia, PA

You may send good wishes and cards to*:
Leslie Esdaile
c/o Tina Ryan Wise
P.O. Box 37189
Philadelphia, PA 19148-9998

On behalf of Leslie, her daughter Helena, her sister Liza and all of her family and friends, we sincerely
thank you for all of your continued prayers and support.
Tina Ryan Wise
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Scenes of destruction in the coastal town after the Tsunami destroyed large parts of the north east coast in the town of Minamisanriku, Miayagi Prefecture, Japan. Image Courtesy of Shelterbox. Click for link.

As you all know, on March 11th 2011, a 9.0 magnitude earthquake shattered thousands of lives in Japan. As of today, the death toll has reached over 8,000 people, with up to 15,000 people missing and over half a million without homes. Furthermore, the Fukushima nuclear plant is dealing with radiation leaks that could contaminate the nearby area further and put more lives at risk.

In cooperation with Button Me Up, Beyond Victoriana will be selling special limited-edition buttons to raise money for the international aid organization Shelterbox to help provide for the devastated survivors of this mounting tragedy.

Each button costs a mere $2 each. ONE HUNDRED PERCENT of all profits made from the sale of these buttons will go toward Shelterbox. We hope to raise at least $1,000 USD between now and the end of Labor Day weekend, SEPTEMBER 5th, 2011.

There are three different button options to choose from, each incorporating an aspect of Japanese culture. Each button is 1 and 1/2 inches in diameter. A perfect addition to any jacket, bag, or steampunk vest.

Sakura Steampunk. Click image to purchase from Button Me Up's Etsy Store.

Rabbit on the Moon Wishing on a Star. Click image to purchase from Button Me Up's Etsy Store.

Helping hands with the Rising Sun. Click image to purchase from Button Me Up's Etsy Store.

Purchase a set of all three. Click image to purchase from Button Me Up's Etsy Store.

Domestic & international readers can order buttons directly through Button Me Up's Etsy store.

In addition, we're not just doing online sales--from now until the end of Labor Day weekend, SEPTEMBER 5TH, 2011, myself and other volunteers will be selling these limited edition buttons at every single steampunk-related event I will be going to. Every single steampunk-related event, whether it be a convention, nightclub event, photoshoot, concert, Meetup gathering, etc., these buttons will be available for purchase. Contributions will be made directly to Shelterbox throughout the summer, and I'll be giving periodic updates about how much money has been donated thus far.

To keep in mind just exactly how many events that entails, see this list of where I will be selling:

Nova Albion 2011
The Anachronism II
Anime Boston (in cooperation with Button Me Up)
International Steampunk City
Steampunk World's Fair
plus, any future events this summer!

After the jump, read more about Shelterbox's mission, and how Beyond Victoriana will give a special opportunity for people who donate in connection to our blog.

Read more on Beyond Victoriana
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2010 has been a momentous year, both blog-wise and in general steampunk-wise. Looking back, a lot of amazing things happened: I attended dozens of cons and steampunk events, corresponded with many interesting and smart steampunks, won an award, and got a cool side job. I've worked with a growing network of steampunk hobbyists, academics, tinkerers, activists, and costumers. Many of these people I now consider friends of the blog and in real life as well. Because of efforts from everyone here, Beyond Victoriana has been recognized and signal boosted by many different sites and folks across the steampunk community & the general SF/F community around the world-- including The Steampunk Workshop, Steampunk Magazine, The Steampunk Tribune, The Steampunk Scholar, Silver Goggles, Edwardian Promenade, Dru Pagliassotti, Jeff Vandermeer, Scott Westerfeld, Bruce Sterling, Racialicious,, SFSignal, Bibliophile Stalker, Free the Princess, Leanne Renee Hieber, The Steampunk Librarian, Overbury Ink, Doc Fantastique's Show of Wonders, Airship Ambassador, World SF News Blog, Steampunk Conselho, and

Maintaining this blog has been extremely busy for me, and it couldn't have been the success it is without YOU: the readers and the contributors. At the beginning of 2010, what started off as a personal project has grown to become a community venture, and it wouldn't have happened without the numerous volunteer writers, reporters, and photographers who have helped me out. I feel like a broken record of saying this all the time to people, but that's because THIS is what multiculturalism means to me: it isn't just one person standing on a soapbox spewing encyclopedic facts, but a community of people interested in sharing their intellectual and artistic knowledge and personal experiences. I recently read an interview with Maegan la Mala Ortiz, Managing Editor and Co-Publisher of Vivirlatino, who said something that had really struck a chord:

Diversity has become such a buzzword almost to the point of meaninglessness. Diversity is not about holding hands to cover up difference. It is about acknowledging how difference works, good and bad and how we can build across not through or over difference.

That has always been the mission behind Beyond Victoriana: we are not simply celebrating, but also debating, confronting, and discovering through critical listening and learning. Because to post up content without context is equal to empty hand-holding. We're not talking about historical facts alone, but how these facts shouldn't be separated from how they affect our lives today. And it's about time we did more than hold hands, but raise them up. Together.

That being said, the content for 2011 kicks off with some great news.

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I've been working on major developments with the blog as of late, the first being the website's new layout (if you're reading this site via RSS feed, you might want to take a look at the shininess; yeah, I'm a bit proud of this revamped look. ^_^)

More exciting, though, is that Beyond Victoriana's content will take a dip into fiction. As a rule, I don't accept fiction submissions to post on the site, but this is a very special case. In cooperation with Tachyon Publishing, Beyond Victoriana will host translated excerpts from the Brazilian anthology VAPORPUNK. You may have read Fabio Fernandes' review of the anthology during Steampunk Fortnight, but here is the only place on the internet where you'll be able to read teasers in English from this anthology. Click on the nifty icon on the website sidebar to read more (or you can click on the cover below.)

Read the rest on
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Recently, Ann and Jeff VanderMeer announced the finalists for Last Drink Bird Head Award and Beyond Victoriana was graciously nominated under the category for "Gentle Advocacy." The premise behind the awards is "to celebrate those in the genre community who enrich us with their time, energy, and words, for causes greater than themselves."

I'm honored to be considered a nominee along with these other fine folks:

- Hal Duncan (for blogging and Notes from New Sodom)
- N.K. Jemisin (for blogging and commentary)
- Jason Sanford (for blogging)

Winners will be announced on October 16th. Whatever the outcome, though, I'm pleased about the impact Beyond Victoriana has had upon the steampunk and greater sci-fi community, and wish the best for all nominees.
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For awhile, I've been thinking about how I spend my time in conducting Beyond Victoriana. It has grown, rather quickly, from an interesting side project to a more serious venture, in part thanks to the readers responses and because of my own growing fascinating with all steampunk as a form of creative expression and as a subculture community.

My main series host Dreamwidth--as great of a service this has been--is not very conductive to scheduled postings, and it's also hard to consolidate feedback with cross-postings on multiple sites.

So, Beyond Victoriana now has a space of its very own, away from my public journal.

Come and visit!

Beyond Victoriana

The upgraded site has new features:

- Readers can sign up for the RSS feed or mailing list for new postings. (Or they can just follow me on Twitter.)

- Individual pages about Beyond Victoriana's revised Mission Statement, Series Index (complete with DW & LJ old archives), and Submissions Guidelines for other people interested in contributing to this project.

- Teaser updates will be posted to DW, LJ, MySpace & Steampunk Empire, but I'm encouraging people to leave feedback on the new site.

So update your links, add it to your RSS reader, bookmark it, and spread the word!

The next Beyond Victoriana update will be a double post, coming tomorrow, so watch this space.

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Ah, con season has now begun!  For those of you unaware, I assist The Penny Dreadfuls of the SS Icarus during their wild escapades throughout the New England and Mid-Atlantic area.  We're going to be wreaking havoc at TempleCon in Warwick, RI, this weekend, and later this month, we'll also be invading Wicked Faire.

This, of course, will affect my update schedule for the next coming weeks. But, have no fear, for this will only benefit your lovely selves!

For the month of February, Beyond Victoriana will feature extra "odds & ends" posts before I'm gone on a con weekend that will update on the Thursday before. That's right, this month you'll get TWO more lovely snippets to munch on.  Ain't that great?

Why is this?  Well, for one thing, I keep getting great links, photos, & snippets from you readers, and I want a place to feature them! And for another, this will leave something up if the Sunday post is late because of traveling, marauding, whatever.

And that's not all! I will also have a guest blogger, the lovely Jaymee Goh of and Rebellious Jezebel Blogging filling in for me on February 14th with a guest post.   She writes great stuff and volunteered to cover for me during the Lunar New Year holiday.

So, to recap this month's schedule:

Thursday the 4th: "Odds & Ends" Post #1
Sunday the 7th (ish...) Beyond Victoriana #13
Sunday the 14th: Beyond Victoriana #14 with Guest blogger Jaymee Goh
Thursday the 18th: "Odds & Ends Post #2"
Sunday the 21st: (ish...) Beyond Victoriana #15

Happy reading! ^_^

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I'm thrilled to announce that Beyond Victoriana has received an endorsement from the wonderful people over at Steampunk Magazine. Check out their kindly words of encouragement here.

And, just as a reminder, Beyond Victoriana will be making its reappearance on the aethernets starting January 17th.
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Hope everyone has been enjoying the holidays!

I'm taking a little hiatus for the next few of weeks as I work on some exciting new articles & interviews for Beyond Victoriana and catch up on some real life happenings. To tide you over a bit, check out the spiffin' new series index, featuring all of the BV posts made so far both on LJ and Dreamwidth.

Beyond Victoriana will resume fresh and dandy in the new year on January 17th, 2010.

And, as always, if you have anything to suggest, please drop me a line here or email me at attic [dot] hermit [ at] gmail [dot] com.

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For those of you who may have noticed, starting this week I have opened up public posts on my Livejournal to host Beyond Victoriana. Now, you LJ-ers will have the thrill and excitement of viewing this weekly series on your very own flist!

Beyond Victoriana on Livejournal

Please note that since LJ is my private journal, don't be offended if I don't friend you back. I do hope, however, that this will make enjoying BV much more easier. ^-^

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I suppose Jha has outed me in the comments here.

For the past few weeks I’ve been planning a series of posts to focus on non-European steampunk. I’ve enjoyed G.D. Falksen’s historical posts (& a link to his site), especially where he touches upon non-Western cultures. I’d love to see some more cultural expansion in the fantasy world of steampunk, especially in light of Racefail and its repercussions on how individuals and communities are working towards addressing the issues of marginality, tokenism, ignorance, and outright racism in the SF/F community.

So, here are the guidelines for myself (and for you), about this series:

- The focus will be on non-Western European cultures (Asian, Hispanic, African, Middle Eastern, First Nation peoples, etc). North American (i.e. US & Canada) examples may count, but I don’t want the posts to be too North American-centric. Eurasian cultures (the Caucuses, Russia and the former USSR) count. Cross-cultural or transcultural examples definitely count, and I’d be interested in exploring how steampunk addresses this.

- There will be a new “Beyond Victoriana” update once a week, every Sunday. I know that’s slow in interwebz-time, but that way, I’ll be sure to keep on top of updates. Once my posting becomes more consistent, then I’ll consider updating it more often. Posts will be long or short, depending on my sanity.

- The time period will be within Victorian & Edwardian eras (1837 – 1910), but I’ll consider outside this period, if I think it’s quite BV worthy.

- Posts will relate to the fields of history, literature, fashion & the arts, or science and technology, but must have some sort of retro-future/fantastical slant or relevance (otherwise, we'd just be doing history lessons!)

- Feel free to comment on this post if you find something BV worthy items that you want to see featured! ^-^

The first “Beyond Victoriana” post will start October 25th.


Addendum to a Preface (initially posted in Beyond Victoriana #1 on October 25th, 2009; added here on December 26th, 2009.)

First, I think it’ll be beneficial to explain my intentions with this weekly series, especially since it has garnered so much interest since its announcement.

The posts will focus on different aspects of non-Eurocentric steampunk.

1) Examples of past history, literature, fashion & the arts, or science and technology that can be considered inspiration for non-Eurocentric steampunk
2) How non-Eurocentric steampunk is represented in the genre today

At turns, posts will be pedantic; other times, it’ll be nothing more than an interesting blurb I unearthed from somewhere. Using this approach, I hope to engage in the discussion of non-European steampunk on multiple levels: from recognizing individual examples to a more intellectual approach to discuss ideas that are steampunk-worthy.

Or sometimes, a linkspam will have to do. ^-~

The intention of this series is to start conversations with steampunk enthusiasts, to expand cultural mindsets, to question the stereotypical representations of “steampunk,” and to let me learn about random things. I like random learning.

April 2017

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