The Mythopoeic Society’s annual conference, popularly called “Mythcon,” has historically been held at a college or university campus in late July or early August. Each conference is constructed around a theme related to Inklings studies and/or fantastic and mythic literature. Each conference also features an author and a scholar guest of honor. Papers, panel discussions, readings, entertainment, an art show, a dealers’ room, and other activities fill the four-day event. Another Mythcon highlight is our annual banquet, after which the Mythopoeic Awards are presented. A small (usually 100 – 200 people) size and intimate setting makes Mythcon an excellent venue for meeting people with common interests.…
The Mythopoeic Society has always encouraged scholarship in mythopoeic and Inklings studies by providing a venue in which scholars, new and old, may present papers which may in turn be considered for publication in Mythlore, assisting scholars in need of financial aid to attend Mythcon, and recognizing student scholars with the Alexei Kondratiev Award.
If you (or your group) are interested in putting on a Mythcon in your area, please contact the Steward for Mythopoeic Conferences, Lynn Maudlin for information and help.
Mythcon 52’s theme provides multiple opportunities to explore the Other in fantasy and mythopoeic literature. Tolkien spoke in “On Fairy-stories” of “the desire to visit, free as a fish, the deep sea; or the longing for the noiseless, gracious, economical flight of a bird.” We invite discussion about the types of fantasy that are more likely to put us into contact with the alien, such as time portal fantasy and space travel fantasy. In addition to Inklings, some writers who deal particularly well with the truly alien who might be explored include Lovecraft, Gaiman, Le Guin, Tepper, and others. Other topics that might be fruitfully explored are: depictions of the alien Other in film and television (Contact, Arrival, HBO’s Watchmen, etc.); developing constructed languages that are truly different from those of Earth-based humans; fantastical Others in indigenous myths (such as Coyote and Spider Woman from Native American mythology); and American folklore about the alien (flying saucers, alien abduction, Area 51, Roswell).