Form Models Function: Narrative Techniques in Trouble on Triton

Last month I explored a reading of Trouble on Triton focused on content, specifically the representations of sex in two of Delany’s novels. This month I turn my attention to another reading that analyzes form and structure in the series of books that constitute Sam Delany’s Modular Calculus. Trouble on Triton is the preface to this collection.

Kathleen Spence begins Neveryon Desconstructed  by explaining her impetus for writing the essay: to understand the critical work of Jacques Derrida and novels by Sam Delany. Her motivation resembles my own as I write these blogs exploring the connection between Dark Ecology and Trouble on Triton.

While the genre of science-fiction is often defined in terms of content: stories that contain aliens, futuristic technology, or space travel; Delany argues that science-fiction also relies on a particular form, a metaphoric structure that allows a certain type of discourse to be read as a denotative description. (p. 284) For example, the phrase sensory shield  in Trouble on Triton could be part of a discourse on the […]