Aliette de Bodard. The Shipmaker. (Interzone #231, Nov/Dec 2010).

Set in AdeB’s ‘Xuya’ continuity, here she takes a look at the uploaded spaceship-mind trope with her Eastern/Aztec worldview.

A ship is being created in space, and rather than being a thing of plans, mechanics and metals, the creation is very much in the ancient mode of jade carving, with painstaking attention to details, to the flows of the elements, and so forth. To complicate matters, the shipmaker has made choices in her life that have disconnected from her family and potentially from her ancesteors; and, worse still, the ship mind is due to arrive very much ahead of schedule, leaving her with the challenge of creating the ship in a race against the clock.

It’s far more than a ‘can she do it in time’ story, with a welcoming non-western/eurocentric, non-male perspective.

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