During World War II, German scientists synthesized anabolic steriods and experimented on concentration camp inmates and prisoners of war in an attempt to treat chronic wasting. Experiments were allegedly conducted on German soldiers to increase their aggression and agility, however, there is no evidence whatsoever that something like an Übersoldier (a play on the Nazis’ idealized Übermensch) was ever in the making — let alone created.
Yet “supersoldiers” keep appearing in video games. Continue reading “Dieselpunk Games’ Obsession with Nazi Supersoldiers”
Although airships are popular in steampunk, their heydays came during the era that is more typically associated with dieselpunk. They shared the skies with that other novelty, the aeroplane. Both coexist elegantly in Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow (2004).
Planes represent adventure and perhaps a tad of recklessness. Airships exhale confidence and grandeur. They represent an era that was characterized by progress and great confidence in it. Continue reading “Airships: True Liners of the Skies”
P. Djeli Clark suggested earlier this year (sorry we didn’t pick up on it earlier) that steampunks should be glad to have activists among them who can constantly remind them of what they’re doing wrong. Continue reading “How Glad We Are to Have Steampunks Who Tell Us What Not to Do”
The online newspaper The Daily Dot has done a nice feature on dieselpunk. They way they introduce the genre is pretty neat and worth quoting in full. Continue reading ““A World Where the 1940s Never Ended””
Christine Folch wonders in The Atlantic why fantasy and science-fiction are so popular in the West. Her explanation is applicable to steampunk. Continue reading “Why Are We Drawn to Steampunk?”
Our friend Larry Amyett has a great article in the latest edition of SteamPunk Magazine about the different flavors of dieselpunk. He argues that the term “flavors” gets it exactly right: “Just as a recipe includes a variety of flavors from many ingredients,” he writes, “most dieselpunks mix the different flavors to suit their personal tastes.” Continue reading “Larry Amyett Mixes Dieselpunk Flavors”
There seems to be some confusion over the origin of “Victorientalism,” considered a subgenre of steampunk at this blog and which was the topic of the March 2010 edition of the Gatehouse Gazette.
A post that’s making the rounds on Tumblr, and which seems to have originated here, alleges that I “coined” the phrase. I didn’t. Continue reading “I Did Not Invent Victorientalism”
Soon after the war in Europe ended, rumors began to circulate that part of Germany’s military and scientific establishment had fled the fatherland before Soviet troops could conquer Berlin. Stories of missing U-boats and forbidden aviation technologies fueled wild theories of Nazi redoubts and the imminent resurrection of the Third Reich. A huge United States Navy operation in the Antarctic in 1946 seemed only to confirm the worst of fears — that the Nazis’ reign of terror had been able to survive underground near the South Pole.
Continue reading “Nazis in Antarctica”
As the war in Europe drew to a close, the Western Allies convinced themselves that the fall of Berlin would not be the end of it. The Nazis, they believed, would hunker down in the Austrian and Bavarian Alps and continue the war from a formidable Alpenfestung in the mountains. Continue reading “The German National Redoubt That Wasn’t”
Late last year, when an image of teenage pop star Justin Bieber wearing something of a steampunk outfit appeared online, the vast majority of steampunk fandom seemed appalled. For such an icon of contemporary pop culture (or lack thereof) as Justin Bieber to delve into the steampunk aesthetic was anathema to steampunks’ self image as defying the mainstream culture. Some said this marked the end of steampunk as an alternative culture altogether.
That in itself, our Marcus Rauchfuß observed, was evidence of steampunk having gone mainstream already.
“When a scene is truly underground,” he wrote, “new members are always welcome. People are excited about and very welcoming toward newcomers. The scene has to grow to a certain point for a style-police to emerge.”
Yet that has happened to steampunk. And it’s not something we can blame Justin Bieber for. Continue reading “Chauvinism in Steampunk”