UC San Diego Library to Host Steampunk Tea Aug. 25

Anastasia Hunter

The tea—which is free and open to the public— will be a celebration of steampunk literature, which re-imagines the Victorian Era with a sci-fi aesthetic in a steam-powered world. The event is being sponsored by the Arts Library. The event, which includes light refreshments, will include a lively survey by Anastasia Hunter of steampunk literature from Jules Verne onwards. Steampunk fans will also have the opportunity to see a collection of Jules Verne books and view a scale-model paper theater version of the author’s most successful play "Journey through the Impossible." A selection of steampunk-inspired films in the UC San Diego Library's permanent collection will be screened in Geisel Library's high-definition rooms.

Participants at Gaslight Gathering, San Diego’s annual Steampunk Convention

Anastasia Hunter, director of Programming for Gaslight Gathering, San Diego's premier steampunk convention, will discuss the history of steampunk literature, from its inception in the 19th Century with the works of Victor Hugo and Jules Verne, to the 1980's, when the term "steampunk" was first coined. Hunter will also survey more recent examples of the genre from authors such as Scott Westerfeld and Cherie Priest. Hunter’s presentation will highlight the use of steampunk as an inspiration for journeys of discovery, both real and imaginary.

The exhibit of works by Jules Verne, "Jules Verne: Father of Science Fiction and Adopted Godfather of Steampunk" includes books owned by steampunk aficionados James and Kim Keeline. Supplementing the exhibit is a selection of the Library's steampunk books, including those from local authors William Stoddard and Scott Farrell. Also on display in Geisel Library through the month of August are examples of Victorian Era entertainments of interest to steampunk enthusiasts, such as: magic lanterns, paper optical toys, and paper theatres.

About the UC San Diego Library

Ranked among the nation's top 20 public academic research libraries, the UC San Diego Library plays an integral role in advancing and supporting the university’s research, teaching, patient care, and public service missions. As the intellectual heart of the UC San Diego campus, the university library provides access to more than 7 million digital and print volumes, journals, and multimedia materials to meet the knowledge and information needs of faculty, students, and members of the public. Each day, the Library’s vast resources are accessed nearly 90,000 times through the Library’s main Web site. For more information: http://libraries.ucsd.edu/

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