A report from last month’s library-and-spec-fic panel at the Philippine Literary Festival, is up over at GMA News: 10 reasons why libraries should carry local speculative fiction. Alternative Alamat’s print cover makes an appearance in the article, hooray! Here’s an excerpt:
3. It provides hope and escape from the mundane.
“Do not look at the word ‘escapist’ as a negative term. We all need to escape from reality from time to time—why? Because we’re not animals,” said Dean. “We can have physical cages whether we are political prisoners or held in cages by our politicians in some other way—but we can escape these with our dreams and imaginations of change. And then we make the change and watch reality come to pass.”
4. It reflects the human condition.
Spec fic can comment on what it means to be human, or to be Filipino, just as well as any other piece of literature can.
5. It has didactic and educational aspects.
There are stories and books specifically for this purpose, but Dean stressed that one can take any story and use it to teach. He cited classic examples from Philippine mythology and folklore.
6. It offers alternate ways and different perspectives of seeing the world.
Spec fic can give marginalized persons—such as LGBT, women, persons with disabilities, indigenous cultures—a voice for their concerns. If one is in a position of privilege, Dean said, one should consider themselves lucky and take up the burden of helping voice those concerns or give voice to those who do not have any.