Does Fiction Matter? Fiction, Fantasy & Social Change

Best part of an excellent essay (loved the part about the “Radium Girls,” too; excellent analogy): “My bigger concern is that, when we package sociopathy as ‘romance’? Sadists as Alpha male heroes? That is a confusing message (and a dangerous one) for everyone, but most especially for those still forming opinions and identities. In fact, I probably would have had NO problem with FSoG had it been in the genre of psychological thriller or horror. But slap ‘ROMANCE’ on it? Whole ‘notha’ ballgame.”

I DID read ALL three 50 Shades books when they came out, just to see what all the fuss was about. It was as if I were watching a train wreck and could not look away. So, I know whereof I speak; I did review these pieces of junk: bad writing, ridiculous and insulting (to both males and females) characters, horrible plotting (what little there is of it), terrible underlying and overt messages.

Read Kristen’s post. She’s insightful and accurate.

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image via Flikr Creative Commons, via Mikko Luntiala Image via Flikr Creative Commons, via Mikko Luntiala

We had a very lively and interesting debate over the 50 Shades cultural “phenomena” on Friday. I’m deeply grateful for all those commenters who posted such thoughtful opinions, even those who didn’t agree with me. I actually am not afraid of people disagreeing with me andhave zero interest in my blog simply being an ideological echo chamber.

Yet, there are a few things I’ve “heard” in the comments or even on Facebook which leave me flummoxed and I believe these assertions call for a closer examination.


Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Mike Licht Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Mike Licht

One argument that baffled me was this idea that 50 Shades is just a book and only fantasy. I do not begrudge James her success nor am I lambasting anyone who likes the books. To…

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