Re: Maus I, plus

David Heller (daveh@PANIX.COM)
Thu, 27 Jan 1994 10:16:46 -0500

On Wed, 26 Jan 1994, Michael Bauser wrote:

> Zikes. That was longer than I realized. Hope I haven't put anybody to
> sleep. "[M]etaphor for some kind of oppression" is fairly easy to grasp,
> although I feel obligated to note the emic theory among science-fiction and
> fantasy writers that "good" sf/fantasy often use nonhumans in metaphorical
> stories (commenting on social phenomena like oppression and xenophobia) to
> bypass initial emotional reactions people have to seeing their native social
> systems criticized. "Star Trek" did that a lot.
It is funny that you mention star trek here, b/c I did an article for a
group newsletter I edit, that was about the Ferengi and recent comments on
their comparison to Shylock, implying that they are anti-semitic, or more
correctly their use is anti-semitic.
In the article I went over the idea in Star Trek is precisely what you
mentioned. I also went over the original creations and noted that it was
the Vulcan's that on purpose were Jews. L.Nimoy and G. Rodenberry were
very conscious of it. Also Klingons and Romulans were also created as
specific character types. And today the Bejorans/Betatheds/and even Data
(as a singular unit of culture) are symbolic of different groups/and ideas
in earthly occurances.