In this episode of SF Crossing the Gulf, Karen Burnham and Karen Lord discuss the Ted Chiang story “Hell is the Absence of God” as well as the Greg Egan stories “Crystal Nights,” “Yeyuka,” and “Closer.” They talk about topics such as third person omniscient narrators, villains, suffering, and the trope of Westerners sacrificing fingers for Africa. Karen Burnham would like to add that the story “Microcosmic God,” whose author she forgot, was written by Theodore Sturgeon.

Next week we’ll be discussing Erna Brodber’s The Rainmaker’s Mistake, and after that we’ll return to Greg Egan’s short fiction.

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