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Love and Its Discontents: An Analysis of How Gender and Love are Portrayed in The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers
Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication.
2019 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (professional degree), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This essay aims to analyze how The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet (2014) by Becky Chambers differs from a majority of science fiction novels regarding its depiction of gender and love. The theoretical approach used is gender studies and heteronormativity, with a focus on Judith Butler’s heterosexual matrix, and Dorthe Staunes’ definition of intersectionality. The findings of this essay show that this novel deviates from the status quo of having a white, heterosexual male as the protagonist and instead employs a primarily non-white, multi-species crew as its main characters. Characters with disabilities are given the right to exist in their own right, instead of existing as individuals who need to be cured through technology. The notion of love is also depicted in a nuanced way, where romance does not have to be an important factor in order to have a fulfilling relationship. In regard to gender, Lovey’s forming of her gender identity, with her being an AI, sets this novel apart from the majority of science fiction novels. There are aspects in this novel that still adhere to the heterosexual matrix but the aspects that veer away from this, such as the Aandrisks’ family structures, deviate in such a way that it sets The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet apart from a number of other contemporary science fiction works.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. , p. 31
Keywords [en]
Science fiction, gender, disability, heterosexual matrix, intersectionality, heteronormativity
National Category
Specific Literatures
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-44256ISRN: JU-HLK-ENA-1-20190009OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-44256DiVA, id: diva2:1321827
Subject / course
HLK, English
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Available from: 2019-06-17 Created: 2019-06-10 Last updated: 2019-06-17Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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More languages
Output format
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