Tiptree Award Renamed

The James Tiptree, Jr. Literary Award has been renamed the Otherwise Award, announced by members of the Tiptree Motherboard on October 13, 2019. In a statement, they said:

The Tiptree Award was named as a joyful joke, 28 years ago.

James Tiptree, Jr/Alice Sheldon is a complicated figure who has grown more so as participants in the sff world have gained more diverse perspectives and more acute critical analyses. In 2019, the Tiptree name no longer captures what potential audiences, nominees, fans, need from an award (and, more recently, from a fellowship program) for the expansion and exploration of gender….

Joy, absurdity, and irreverence have long been in the DNA of the Tiptree Award. What other award crowns the winner with a tiara, raises money with bake sales, and serenades the winner? Now, our community has spoken and said: there is too much discomfort over this history for many of us to feel joyous about this name.

Keeping the joy is more important than keeping the name.

We need a different name.

Official changes to the website and publications will begin in two weeks. The 2019 fellowships will carry the Otherwise name, and the first Otherwise Award will be presented at WisCon 44, to be held May 22-25, 2020 at the Concourse Hotel in Madison WI. “We will consider everyone who has won a Tiptree Award, been named on the Honor or Long List, or awarded a Tiptree Fellowship, to be retroactive Otherwise honorees. Whether you describe your achievement with the Tiptree or Otherwise name – or with both – is up to you.”

For more information, see the official announcement.

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5 thoughts on “Tiptree Award Renamed

  • October 15, 2019 at 6:25 am

    I COMPLETELY understand the renaming of The Campbell Award, and the altering of the image of the World Fantasy Award. But…WHY change the name of Tiptree Award. The name itself is absurdist! And just WHAT in the world could Alice Sheldon have done to offend anyone?

    To quote Harlan Ellison: this is as “crazy as a soup sandwich”.
    Here’s hoping wiser heads will prevail and leave THIS award, and it’s name, alone!

  • October 16, 2019 at 12:45 pm

    It does not matter what contributions you may have made to society, culture and the arts, you won’t be dead long before your foibles and errors will be discovered and your contributions will be rejected.

  • October 19, 2019 at 5:57 pm

    You guys are honestly clueless that she committed a literal murder? Or just indifferent?

    • October 20, 2019 at 5:42 pm

      Surely you mean an _actual_ murder?


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