The Biggest Little SF Publisher you never heard of declares war
April 5, 2015 7:52 AM   Subscribe

(Warning: some links lead to to triggery ranting.) By now, everybody who cares knows that the nominations for the 2015 Hugo Awards reflect the preferences of a bloc-voting slate with an agenda—and their culture wars allies. But, interestingly, a new Hugo-related record has been set: for a Finnish publisher few people have ever heard of is responsible for no fewer than nine nominated works.

Castalia House was (per wikipedia) founded by Theodore Beale (aka Vox Day) in early 2014 in Kouvola, Finland. As their website explains:
Castalia House is a Finland-based publisher that has a great appreciation for the golden age of science fiction and fantasy literature. The books that we publish honor the traditions and intellectual authenticity exemplified by writers such as J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Robert E. Howard, G.K. Chesterton, and Hermann Hesse. We are consciously providing an alternative to readers who increasingly feel alienated from the nihilistic, dogmatic science fiction and fantasy being published today. We seek nothing less than a Campbellian revolution in genre literature.
Total culture wars, very gamergate, much fail, wow. But the screaming question I feel the need to ask, is: why Finland? Could there be a connection between the white supremacist Perussuomalaiset (Finns Party), the overtly racist Sweden Democrats, the Dark Enlightenment/neoreactionary movement, and Vox Day's peculiarly toxic sect of Christian Dominionist theology?

Vox Day writes:
It's time for the church leaders and the heads of Christian families to start learning from #GamerGate, to start learning from Sad Puppies, and start leading. Start banding together and stop accommodating the secular world in any way. Don't hire those who hate you. Don't buy from those who wish to destroy you. Don't work with those who denigrate your faith, your traditions, your morals, and your God. Don't tolerate or respect what passes for their morals and values.
Over a period of years, he's built an international coalition, finding common cause with the European neo-nazi fringe. Now they've attempted to turn the Hugo Awards into a battlefield in their culture wars. But this clearly isn't the end game they have in mind: it's only a beginning. (The Hugos, by their very nature, are an award anyone can vote in for a small fee: it is interesting to speculate on how deep Vox Day's pockets are.) But the real burning question is, "what will he attack next?"

My guess: the Hugo awards are not remotely as diverse and interesting as the SFWAs Nebula Awards—an organization from which Vox Day became only the second person ever to be expelled. He clearly bears SFWA no love, and the qualification for SFWA membership (which confers Nebula voting rights) is to have professionally published three short stories or a novel. Castalia House is a publishing entity with a short story anthology series. Is the real game plan "Hugos today: Nebulas tomorrow?"
posted by cstross (0 comments total)

This post was deleted for the following reason: This is interesting stuff, but it's framed with a little too much personal editorial voice to really fit the front page and in any case would make a lot of sense as a boffo comment in the existing Hugo/Sad Puppies thread from yesterday. -- cortex


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