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Poly Media

Tales of Nevèrӱon

Nisi Shawl / TOR.COM Sep 02 2016
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Tales of Nevèrӱon contains one of my favorite polyamorous situations. Obviously thumbing his authorial nose at traditional anthropology’s tendency to reframe other cultures’ practices within its own values, Delany writes of the polygamous Rulvyn from a feminist viewpoint. Among these mountain people, the sage Venn explains, “a strong woman married a prestigious hunter; then another strong woman would join them in marriage—frequently her friend—and the family would grow.” Reversing the conventional interpretation of polygamy’s power dynamic while keeping numbers and gender identical, Delany calls familiar readings of such relationships into question. Yet the brief passage on Rulvyn mores is only one of the many neat tricks he pulls off in this stunning 1979 fantasy, which on its surface is simply another book in the sword-and-sorcery subgenre.

Additional Info

  • Category: Fiction
  • First Published: 1979
  • Author: Samuel R. Delany
Read 381 times Last modified on Sep 02 2016
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