How science fiction can help us imagine a nonviolent future

A conversation with author Joan Slonczewski, whose 1986 novel "A Door into Ocean" is a master work of nonviolent, feminist literature.

Subscribe to “Nonviolence Radio” on Apple Podcasts, Android, Spotify or via RSS.

“Share the Day” — this is a translation of a greeting from the ocean world of Shora, which was a world created by Joan Slonczewski. She’s a science fiction writer and professor at Kenyon College. This is from her 1986 novel “A Door into Ocean.” The book describes a society of people who are committed to nonviolence at a very, very deep level — and not just an emotional, sentimental kind of “do no harm” nonviolence, but one that is a really deeply transformed view of what it means to be human. And with that, what’s really at stake when we turn to or away from the nonviolent path.

I became so engrossed with this novel because it was more than a book to me. It was the exploration of possibility, a look at what a novel can really do. It’s a glimpse at what nonviolent — not to mention feminist literature — can look like, but also what it means to imagine nonviolent resistance before it happens.

I reached out to Slonczewski for an interview for Nonviolence Radio, and I’m happy to say that she accepted.

Joan: Hi. I’m Joan Slonczewski. I teach microbiology at Kenyon College. And I write science fiction books such as “A Door Into Ocean,” also “Brain Plague,” about microbes that inhabit people’s brains. So, I’m interested in lots of different science and science fiction.

Stephanie: So, I wanted to know if “A Door Into Ocean” was the first science fiction novel that she wrote.

Joan: Not quite. It was my first novel that gained attention. I had published previously a book about a Quaker meeting on another planet. But, “A Door Into Ocean,” was the first one that got a lot of attention. Even Isaac Asimov mentioned it as one of the books of the year.

It came out actually right before the peaceful revolutions in Europe. And during the period that I wrote the book I was told that communist governments never gave up and that we had to use nuclear weapons against them. And that this was just a given. And nonviolence would never work. And then when these revolutions happened, right around the time that my book came out people were looking for other ideas in American literature. And my book was one of the few ideas out there that related to what was happening.

But I was aware for many years of the resistance in Poland through my father and the Solidarnasc movement. And also, through Quakers. I joined the Society of Friends and read up on Gene Sharp, “Nonviolent History.”

Stephanie: I was really curious about this connection to Gene Sharp because Slonczewski’s approach also has a deeply spiritual side, so I asked her what really influenced that spiritual side of her nonviolence in her work.

Joan: My own experience of the Religious Society of Friends provided the spiritual depth of the book because I participated in nonviolent practice through working with the Friends. I was a local organizer for the Nuclear Freeze movement as well as various, various protests of submarine launchings in Groton, Connecticut. And I witnessed and participated in nonviolent actions that meant a lot to me and really showed me things that could be done.

And I was a member of the Religious Society of Friends in New Haven and also in Philadelphia – the Philadelphia Meeting. And so, I had a lot of experiences there that later filled into the book. For instance, when I was in Philadelphia, there was a Philadelphia Peace Committee of the Society of Friends. And the coordinator of that group conducted the meeting while nursing a child. And this was around 1980. So, this was simply not done in society at that time. But I was so impressed that the conductor of the meeting would be nursing a child while she led the meeting, that I found this symbolic and significant.

So, this became a plot element in “A Door Into Ocean,” that the meetings of the sharers were conducted by a woman nursing a child.

I also became interested from an early age in gender issues and was very interested in the growing gay rights movement. Although, I always had a feeling that I had a connection that was unclear to that movement. And I’ve come to realize that I really identify with nonbinary gender. And that I think that was in my writing from the beginning and is also related to nonviolence in a way. Because I think that nonbinary gender is consistent with nonviolence and tends to promote nonviolence.

In my lifetime, I’ve associated strict gender norms with polarization that leads to violence. I think that where people develop and reinforce polar opposites that this tends to encourage clashes of interests in a way. Whereas if you have a blending and a range of gender, then there are more possibilities for engagement.

Stephanie: Now we’re going to hear about these two cultures in the novel that come into conflict. The Valan society which is more violence based, and the Sharer society which is more nonviolence based.

Joan: I think also used some of those ideas in the book because in the book, the Valan culture that was more violent also had polar ideas of gender identity, whereas the Sharers lacked gender identity. And so, I connected gender polarities with violence, that gender polarities could be a source of violence. Especially where you have power differentials.

So, if you assume that there’s always someone in power, then that power has to be reinforced over the other side. And in general, it’s males having power over females. And that was what I saw in American culture at the time.

I was very concerned with the nuclear arms race. And saw the nuclear arms race in very gendered terms. That it was about male power figures with male symbolic weapons that were using the necessity, so-called, for these weapons as a way of maintaining power and preventing people from asserting their rights in society.

Stephanie: Because if you bomb an entire city, you don’t have to worry about what people think anymore because there are no people to think left.

Joan: That’s right. And also, because if you convince people that they are in danger, then people are hostages. Okay, people are hostages of the power. So, you can say, “Well, we would love to fund all these social programs, but we don’t have the money because we have to spend the money pointing bombs at the other side. We’re protecting you.” Okay, so it’s a protection racket. That was how I saw it. And I was very concerned.

Early on in my political understanding, I did not see a way out of the arms race. But as I gained political awareness I realized that this was a fraud, really. And that in fact, it was unnecessary. And also, this is important, that it was not necessary to become perfect. That one did not have to become perfectly nonviolent. That nonviolence itself – nonviolence or less violence is an improvement. And that less violence, by freezing weapons and by stopping and taking one step at a time, that that is a possible thing.

And I think in “A Door into Ocean” I showed people who are not perfect. The Sharers were not perfect. They were imperfect people who had ways of dealing with each other that we could learn from, even in our society.

Stephanie: So, next I try to get Slonczewski to really talk about what the conflict is in the book, who are the two societies and what’s at stake.

Joan: You have a universe far in the future. So, there are two planets. Each one considers the other a moon of its own, but they’re twin planets. They orbit each other. And so, the one planet is inhabited by a fairly traditional male-dominated semi-feudal society. There is space travel, but it is discouraged because for various political reasons. And there are shuttles. So, there are space shuttles to the other planet, Shora.

So, Shora is the planet that is covered entirely by ocean. And is inhabited by an all-female, population of humans. So, I say all-female. They are physically female. But in terms of gender – I see their gender as indeterminate because they view each other as individuals, including individuals with sexual interest. There are sexual interests and sexual jealousies as well.

I think that at the time that I wrote, we lacked the words to describe. Today, I would call their society, “pansexual.” So, they can be attracted to each other or anything but on the basis of individuality rather than polar gender.

And so, they have advanced biological technologies. They have learned to manipulate all the living organisms of their planet. But they have chosen to do so in ways that preserve the natural ecosystem. At the same time, they have powers through their use of genetic use of living animals and plants. They have powers that can enable them to resist the intrusion by others.

So, the Valan Society attempts to bring trade and control to the Sharer society. And then the Sharers choose to resist that control. So, it’s partly a post-colonial narrative, a colonial critique. Although in this case, the Sharers have enough powers of their own that they can resist, and they choose to use nonviolent resistance.

One thing we learned eventually in the book is that although they choose it, it also becomes clear that they have to because if they don’t choose nonviolence, their biological powers will be so great they would eventually overwhelm each other. And that is why they choose it. But it’s a survival choice. And I think today, we’re coming to understand that choosing nonviolence as a survival choice for our planet as well, the planet earth. Because either we live in harmony with each other and the ecosystem or we destroy the ecosystem and then we destroy ourselves.

Stephanie: So, one thing I really loved about “A Door into Ocean” was the deep exploration of the question, “What does it mean to be a human being?” With each society not quite sure if the other society are, indeed, human. And so, this really comes out at one interaction at the beginning of the book when Merwen from the Sharer planet is talking with Spinel from the Valan planet, in a marketplace they see a monkey. And she wants to know, “Is that being human too? You are human. Is that being also human?”

And Spinel is shocked by the question. “No, that’s an animal. And even that animal is somebody’s food sometimes.” So, I asked Slonczewski about this theme and about that interaction.

Joan: Well, the idea of the question, “Are you human? What does it mean to be human?” So, that has many different ways of asking and answers throughout the book. And so, in the beginning, it is seen as puzzling as to why this is such a big deal. And why is she there anyway? And so, in the beginning, there’s more sense that we see from the Valan point-of-view which is a little less alien at the beginning.

So, the Valans – particularly, the soldiers are looking at these creatures mainly from a legalistic point-of-view. They want to prove that the visiting naked women are really just naked animals because then they have fewer rights and it’s easier to get rid of them, okay? So, their aim is to prove that they’re inhuman and lack rights.

Whereas the Sharer aim, at least Merwen’s aim – now remember that the Sharers have diverse viewpoints within their society. They’re not monolithic. Okay, so, Merwen is kind of an advanced philosophical thinker and advanced political thinker. And she is trying to prove that the Valans are human because – it’s complicated.

She realizes – she has the depth of understanding that they are human and she’s afraid that Sharers will make a mistake and label them as nonhuman and then kill them and then they won’t be able to stop killing. Okay?

So, we only find that out later in the book. In the beginning, it’s just a puzzle and the other Sharers don’t understand either. They just think, “Well, Merwen is soft, and she just wants to prevent us from protecting Shora from Valedon and that’s all she’s trying to do.” What they don’t understand, that she knows that the Sharers have the ability to kill themselves. They’re a very small group. They’re less than a million on their planet, okay? Because they have to live on these floating rafts. There isn’t that much space for them.

So, once Sharers – if Sharers get angry enough to kill the Valans, despite the fact that they’re human, what if they then apply that lessen and kill each other? So, she feels that for the sake of the Sharer future, to remain Sharers they have to recognize the humanness of these Valans, okay?

So, it’s ambiguous. Is it that she wonders if they’re human? Or is she actually – she knows they’re human but has to somehow convince the rest of the Sharers that they are human. And I think that there’s some ambiguity there. So, part of the question is that the maleness is an issue. So, she has already interacted with female Valans. And there’s a female Valan character, Berenice, who has earned a name in the Sharer meeting. She’s become partly Sharer.

But now the question is, “Can a male Valan also be shown to be partly Sharer?” Because if that’s true, then the Sharers will have to treat the Valans as if they were sharers and treat them with respect as humans and will not be able to kill them to get rid of them.

So, it’s a complex political move. And then it gets tangled up in her family because a family member becomes personally involved with the boy, Spinel, who comes back with her. So, these political aims become tangled up with her family things in that way.

Stephanie: And in some parts of the conversation about that, some people say, “Well, maybe – okay, granted, they could be human. But even if they are human, they’re so far gone that they’ve lost their humanity. And because they’ve lost their humanity, they can only understand violence. And they’re so caught up in violence and death-hastening that that’s what they’re trying to do to themselves. They want us to kill them.”

Joan: Yes. That’s another argument. So, Yinevra and other members of the meeting, “the gathering,” it’s called on Shora, they debate these questions. They debate whether in fact the Valans are a different kind of creature and whether they have to get rid of them to save Shora. And there is debate which is not fully resolved, okay? Because some groups leave the gathering. And then they go to other gatherings on the planet and come up with slightly different solutions.

So, part of my reason for showing that was that people find very different solutions. And in fact, nonviolence does mean different things to different people and different individuals and different cultures. And I see there something as a ladder or a widening of circles of nonviolence.

So, for instance, Merwen is so extreme in nonviolence that she’s also vegetarian. She does not eat food [meat]. But her daughter collects seafood to eat. So, many Sharers consume animals on their planet whereas Merwen is a more strict nonviolent practitioner. She argues that perhaps not only the Valans are human, but also all the animals of Shora – what if all the animals of Shora are also human? Okay, so she has a more extreme version. So, there are different levels of nonviolence that are shown.

You refer to the monkey. So, on Shora, there are no primates other than humans. So, there’s a limited subset of animals. We kind of figure out later why that is, but they’re all sea creatures and there are no other primates. So, it’s unusual for Sharers to see something that looks close to being human because they see sea animals and then sea creatures and humans. And there’s obvious differences. But it’s a shock to them to see the Valans and then a monkey. That’s shocking because it looks like a hybrid human-animal that they would not ordinarily see.

So, that’s why that’s a particular shock to Merwen when Spinel points it out. And then she tries to tell him, “Well, you know, there are Sharers that would like to eat you, right?” So, this is not an idle question if that monkey is human or not.

Stephanie: Now, there’s one feature on this world of Shora that really stands out from the very beginning. When you’re introduced to two main characters, Merwen and Usha, Merwen is known as, “The Impatient One.” And Usha is known as, “The Inconsiderate One.” These are called Self-Names. And it turns out on their planet Shora you choose a Self-Name when you join the Gathering, which means you are participating in the society more actively and more consciously, or you’ve become an adult. Your Self-Name is the thing that you’re going to work on for the rest of your life. So, I asked Slonczewski about that.

And I also asked her about languages, as I started the show off–“Share the Day.” We’re introduced to the language of Shora through a kind of translation. And it’s a very interesting language because it helps to shape their view of a living world. And so, I asked if she could say more about it.

Joan: So, the Self-Name is the idea is you take a name based on a fault that you need to overcome. Although, sometimes the fault turns out to be a virtue, ambiguously. So, in Merwen’s case, she’s impatient. But it turns out that her mission is quite urgent and has to be done as soon as possible.

The other aspect, the language aspect is very interesting. I haven’t heard of other authors – I’ve been told that there is no other example of this. That I created a language in which subject and object are interchangeable. And this reflects an absolute understanding that there is no such thing as subject and object. That subject and object are equivalent. That each acts upon the other.

And I developed this to quite an extent in the language. It’s amazing how far you can get with that. The importance of it is that if you understand subject and object is equivalent, then you understand that ruler and ruled are equivalent. And that you cannot subjugate someone, but you also cannot obey someone either because it has to be a reciprocal relation.

So, in effect, the Sharer view of equality and egalitarianism is embedded in their mind and their language.

Stephanie: At this point we turn into the book and she invites me to read a paragraph that really spoke to me about the language. And this is on page 36-37 of the book.

“The Protector uses radios and starships.” He jumped up and swung his arm into an arc to mimic the trajectory of the starship. “And he rules everyone in Valadon.”

“Then everyone rules him.”

Spinel stopped and stared down at her. “What’s that?”

“Each force has an equal and opposite force,” Merwen said. “So, who rules without being ruled?”

His mouth hung open and he pulled at his lip. He knew little of forces except for those that held crystals together as his father had beaten into his head over the years.

“You have to learn more of our tongue. In Sharer speech, my words will explain themselves.”

“Oh, I can talk that stuff.” Spinel repeated some of the words he had picked up. Sharer words for water and sky, as well as the plant life and the splay-legged clickfly that sat on her head and emitted perverse noise.

Merwen helped, always patient with his stumbling attempts at pronunciation. But Usha would grimace and shake with soundless laughter. Spinel got more and more annoyed. And when Merwen started on verbs, his temper broke.

“What the devil is word sharing? Does the word ‘speak’ mean ‘listen’ just as well? If I said, ‘Listen to me’ you might talk instead.”

“What is the use of one without the other? It took me a long time to see this distinction in Valan speech.”

Spinel thought over the list of Sharer forms. Learn-sharing, work-sharing, love-sharing. “Do you say ‘Hit-sharing’ too? If I hit a rock with a chisel, does the rock hit me?”

“I would think so. Don’t you feel it in your arm?”

He frowned and thought a better example. It was so obvious. It was just impossible to explain.

“I’ve got it: If Beryl has a child, does a child bear Beryl? That’s ridiculous.”

“A mother is born when her child comes.”

“Or if I swim in the sea, does the sea swim in me?”

“Does it not?”

Helplessly he thought, “She can’t be that crazy.” “Please, you know the difference or don’t you?”

“Of course. But what does it matter?”

Just the idea of being able to create a world with so many intricacies, so much complexity, I wanted to know how Slonczewski did that.

Joan: I think that’s really hard to say. First of all, there’s a lot of basic awareness of physics. You know, I was very interested in physics – how the language of physics related to the language of nonviolence that I read in Gandhi and other authors. You know, Gandhi was much an experimentalist. He wrote a book titled, [The Stories of My] Experiments with Truth, where he would conduct experiments and say, “See, this shows that in fact the world is fundamentally nonviolent, and that truth is the way.”

And so, I was interested in how far you could go with the language of physics that, in fact, it’s true. Every force has an opposite and equal reaction. A force has an opposite and equal reaction. So, forces are reciprocal. And human relations are reciprocal. So, there is a victim and a perpetrator, but whoever perpetrates the crime is harming himself, is creating a criminal and destroying himself as a person.

So, I think that there is this duality. And that understanding that can be helpful in figuring out how to deal with the world, in standing up for yourself. Understand that you are standing up for yourself, but you’re also standing up for the other person. Because by preventing yourself from being a victim, you’re preventing the other from becoming a criminal. So, this is important, right?

I think at that time, also, it was just the beginning of the inclusion movement which really came even decades later. I was fortunate to be associated with the Society of Friends which came to a lot of things sooner than the rest of society. So, we were debating gay marriage at that time in the Quaker meetings in the early 80s accepted same-sex marriage at that time, right?

And also, became interested in ideas of inherent racism, the idea that we were introduced to inclusion so it’s not just enough to support people of other races, but to recognize the inclusion of each other. And so, some of these ideas were just beginning to be debated then. I was able to expand them in a broader framework. I mean there were many places in the novel where these ideas came out.

So that when the soldiers arrived on Shora and tried to get things to be done their way, the Sharers would interact with them with the idea that, “Well, okay, you need something from us. And therefore, we need something from you.” So, they would always seek out reciprocity, one way or another. Sometimes with disconcerting results.

And also, it worked out differently. It was very important to me to show diverse outcomes. So, when the soldiers came, they saw all the Sharers as – I think the term was “Catfish” was the denigrating word, which was a denigrating word for a female attached to a non-human animal.

But they saw them all the same, which is typical that colonizers see the colonized as all the same, but in fact different raft communities approached the situation in different nonviolent ways. So, when the soldiers came with the aim of controlling all the biological factories – so they were instructed that the sharers had these biological weapons on their rafts that had to be controlled. So, different communities would behave differently.

So, one community, the soldiers would come and the Sharers just wouldn’t talk to them. And so, the soldiers would look around. They don’t see any factories, just a bunch of naked women not talking. And then they’d report back, “We didn’t find anything.” And then another raft. So, Merwen’s raft was a little different.

So, they said, “Well, what do you need and who’s asking?” And they looked at them and they said, “Well, we see you have all these weapons, and this is obviously unhealthy. And your attitude is both unhealthy and not grown-up. So, you must be children, sick children in need of care. And so, we need to share care with you.”

And so, they said, “Well, what we need is to see your laboratories.” So, they said, “We don’t normally show our laboratories to children. But if this will help you get better, we’ll show you what we’ve got here. And so, they showed them one of the laboratories. But the soldiers didn’t recognize anything. And then they got hurt on a toxic vine. And then that was about it, right? So, that was a different approach.

So, then a third nonviolent approach was where the soldiers were a little different. So, you know, the other thing that I try to show is that violent groups are also diverse, right? And are violent in different ways. So, there was one platoon of soldiers from Valan that went to a different raft. And this was a long subplot – which actually, I had to cut. It was much longer in the original of the book.

But the platoon leader thought that the mission was a bunch of bunk. And this is often true of lower-level officers, that they think their superiors don’t know anything. Because I did a lot of reading on war literature and the dynamic in warfare. And so, I knew this was a dynamic.

So, this platoon leader is far from the central command. He says, “Well, they don’t know anything. It’s just a bunch of friendly natives here. So, let’s try to get on their good side.” And so, he said, “You know, we’ve probably got stuff you like. And you might have stuff we like. So, let’s just get together.” They tried to be friendly.

And so, the Sharers on that raft also tried to be friendly and said, “Well, sure. We can have a feast together. Let’s do that. And you can see all our places.” Of course, you can be sure they hid anything that was really dangerous, right? But they showed them the tunnels in the raft and said, “Yeah, there’s our laboratory.” And the platoon leader said, “Fine, that’s a laboratory. We report back. Everything’s fine.” And, you know, fraternizing with the enemy, right? So, that was a different way.

So, there are different ways of being nonviolent and there are also different ways of being violent, okay. So, that was also important.

Stephanie: I guess in my experience of reading, I don’t read a lot of fiction stories about nonviolence because there’s so many real-life stories out there. But I was so grateful of how complicated and how complex it became and how real to life it became. And yet, also aspirational in a way that the Sharers were responding in diverse ways.

I mean the violence kept escalating. Just when you were hoping, like maybe this would do it. And everything is going to be nice in the end. It wasn’t going that way. And it doesn’t go that way either. Things are left complex, I think.

Now there’s a term in the book that is used to describe Spinel who is male-bodied. And he arrives in the world of Shora where there are no other male bodies except for some people from his world. The term they use to describe him is “Malefreak.” And I asked Slonczewski if this was considered to be a pejorative term.

Joan: Well, I think to be fair, the Sharers who use the term, it’s the most appropriate term from their base of normality. What is normal for them is that people, as they understand, or as they have experienced people, all have wombs, right? And so, if they encounter people that have a different kind of appendage, then they think of that as abnormal, right?

And so, these are not, you know, sophisticated university graduates, right? These are just everyday people. But I think it’s hard to imagine that we take for granted that humans come in two different shapes. But actually, the majority of animals in the animal phylogeny – this is something I know as a biologist, the majority of animals are invertebrates and are hermaphrodites. So, hermaphrodite is the standard, if you will. And it’s just a very small number of offshoots of the animal phylogeny that have different sexes.

So, the Sharers, they use the term matter-of-factly. That is a person that has an abnormal appendage from their point-of-view. From our point-of-view, we see these people. They are human, but they have this abnormal appendage. So, therefore, they’re “freaks.” So, I think that you can say they don’t intend, “malefreak” as pejorative.

We go through this all the time. You know, the question of, “What is it okay to call people?” So, I think from that standpoint, it certainly wouldn’t be reasonably taken as a negative by the other side. And some Sharers did mean it as a negative. Some, it was just a descriptor. And others, you know, really detested what they saw as malefreaks and wanted to get rid of that kind of entity. I mean that was part of the debate in Sharer society.

Stephanie: Meanwhile, Colonel Jade, who they call, “a normal sister,” was the cruelest, most dehumanized human, I think, in the –

Joan: Yeah. So, that was intentional because I was aware of the concern that I did not want this idea that females are always good, and males are always bad. So, to counteract that conclusion, I did show them the most – the person whose violence is depicted in the most detail is that of a female in a Valan society. And that’s not at all inconsistent with it being a patriarchal society. Because in a patriarchal society, when females do gain power – often, but not always, they have to be more violent than the men in order to gain power. That is not always true.

But at the time, you know, there were key examples such as Prime Minister Thatcher. You know, the comparison between Prime Minister Thatcher–“the Iron Lady” and Ronald Reagan was right there. And many people thought that Thatcher, you know, out-Reaganed Reagan, was even more violent a leader than Reagan was.

So, I wanted to make it clear. It’s clear that females of the full capacity for violence. That that can’t be ignored. That being said, it’s also the case that many female leaders offer an extra dimension, a new dimension and bring new kinds of leadership. I mean those things happen also. And so, I saw both sides of that.

Stephanie: Now, my next question for Slonczewski was a big one. It was about God and the practice of religion. And just as these two societies have different approaches to violence and nonviolence, they also had very different approaches to God and spirituality. The Sharers having a practice called “White Trance,” which she’ll describe. And also, a different relationship to the concept of a Living World and God. Whereas the Valans had more of a God in the sky who they’re told cares about them, but whom they may or may not have a direct relationship to. I asked her about this.

Joan: So, I think that the idea of White Trance was a neurological state that the Sharers could achieve, and they could teach other humans to achieve it. And that was a way to give them more power over their own bodies under the pressures, under psychological and physical pressures that they would face. That was there in part for that reason and in part, as an extension of spirituality.

So, spirituality is very important to me. It’s very important as a support for nonviolence. Although, I do embrace the Gene Sharp point-of-view that nonviolence can be used as a political tool and does not depend on any particular spirituality. So, I embrace that. And I understand Gene Sharp’s point-of-view is that no matter what your aim, if you’re nonviolent, it’s better than if you are violent. Okay?

And I think that can be debated, but it’s an important point. At the same time, spirituality helps strengthen nonviolence. And I did try to show in the book that the spirituality of the Sharers was consistent with Valan spirituality. There’s a Valan religion presented, the “Spirit Callers.” And Spinel actually connects and becomes a Spirit Caller on his own planet and connects that with the Sharer’s spirituality.

Stephanie: You just created such a beautiful story and I’m just so grateful for your work. And your students are so lucky to have you. I bet you have a lot of beautiful conversations.

Joan: Well, thank you for this conversation. I’m so glad to see the work that you’re doing because we need to promote the possibilities. You know, our survival today depends on nonviolence just as the Sharer’s survival depended on nonviolence. So, the more you can promote this in the world, the better.

Stephanie: You’re at Nonviolence Radio and you’ve been listening to a conversation with Joan Slonczewski who is a science fiction writer and professor at Kenyon College. We’ve been talking about her [1986] feminist science fiction book, “A Door into Ocean.”

Transcript and sound design by Matthew Watrous.

Music by Zakir Hussain & Rakesh Chaurasia.

Related Episodes