"whether there's something in the form of the writing that lends itself to radical or subversive aesthetics"
- China Mieville in a decade-old interview in the International Socialism Journal (can you say desperate for content?) via SB
Or, alternately, is there something about left-wing ideology that lends itself to fantasy? After all, what sci-fi / fantasy writer has ever conceived of an alternate reality half as compelling as the socialist utopia of Marx and Engels?
Das Kapital may be the most influential work of sci-fi / fantasy ever.
P.S. No, I haven't fallen prey to the Mieville-groupiedom that seems to have overtaken the blogosphere. Never read the man. Have no immediate plans to. Life is too short.
P.P.S. Am I the only one who finds silly Marxist screeds (see the Mieville interview) against Tolkien amusingly pathetic? One could claim just as convincingly (I would argue more convincingly) that LoTR is an allegorical depiction of the inevitable decline of the aristocracy (Elves, Frodo) and the rise of the working class (Dwarves, Sam) to take over the new world. Tolkien may wax nostalgic every now and then, but his perspective on the engines of history is clear-sighted, and, unlike his critics, he is no slave to ideology. All of which is, of course, irrelevant to the magic of his work.
P.P.P.S. Ironically, one could legitimately argue that Sauron is the embodiment of the Marxist enterprise: not the triumph of the working class, but the emergence of the police state.