El Coyote Gordo (supergee) wrote,
El Coyote Gordo
supergee

Heinlein

Maybe I'm weird. I read Stranger in a Strange Land in 1966, and it blew my mind, "Thou art God" even more than the sex stuff, and more (brief list of things I like about him). From the git-go, though, I had doubts about the book and its author: The strong sexual dimorphism bothered me at the very first reading, and it was soon joined by the put-downs of marijuana and homosexuality, and later more.

So I love the best of his work, but I do not belong to the school (Sarah A. Hoyt may be the latest) that appears to believe that his flatulences smelled like Chanel #5. (I think they're a lot closer to the truth than the people who believe he was a fascist.) I like an idea I encountered in the writings of Edward Hall, of a tribe in Mexico that doesn't have global categories of Sane and Insane but believes that some people don't function well in some situations. It works at the other end of the scale, with Heinlein and with the only other writer who comparably influenced me, Robert Anton Wilson, who programmed me in ways that were not obvious for months or even years, but who from the beginning seemed neither feminist nor elitist enough.

Do drop in on Tor's Heinlein symposium and buy the bio.
Tags: reading
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