A Steampunk History of a World at War

Other steampunk

Dieselpunk Lexicon Part 8: Diesel Era

Dieselpunk - January 14, 2017 - 8:16pm
In genre-punk (which Dieselpunk is a branch of) the prefix distinguishes one branch from another. For example, the 'cyber' prefix in Cyberpunk is a reference to the computer or web based technology. Whereas Steampunk, arguably the widely known of the anachronistic genre-punk branches, the 'steam' prefix is a euphemism for the culture, history, aesthetics and tropes that appeared around the beginning of the Victorian Era in 1831 through the La Belle Epoque, which ended at the start of World War 1 when steam technology was king.

Continuing then with the standard set by Steampunk, the prefix of 'diesel' in Dieselpunk is a euphemism for the culture, history, aesthetics and tropes of the time after the end of the Steam Era when internal combustion replace steam tech as the dominant technology. This post-Steam time period is often referred to in the Dieselpunk community as the 'Diesel Era' (Not to be confused with the respective eras in the locomotive tech.)

I don’t believe that there’s a hard line dividing the Steam Era and the Diesel Era. I believe that the Steam Era died a slow death in the blood and filth of the Great War. Then, like the mythological Phoenix, the Diesel Era arose from that same firestorm that consumed the Steam Era.

World War 1 DieselpunkThe world was very different when the dust settled at the end of World War 1. The war saw the end of the great empires of Continental Europe as well as the Ottoman Empire of the Middle East. It also saw the exit of Russia from the international scene and the entrance of the US. After the war the US filled the vacuum left by the rubble of the European cities and economies being that the American infrastructure was untouched by the conflict. This moved the locus of world economic power, and hence world culture, from Europe to America.

When did the Diesel Era end? There’s no consensus among Dieselpunks on this. Some place the end in the atomic fires of Hiroshima. Others place it at the launch of Sputnik. I place the end of the Diesel Era as dying a slow death during the Korean War, which began in 1950 and ended in 1954. The Diesel Era had died completely, in my opinion, by the end of the war.

World War 2 or Possibly Korean War Dieselpunk
Categories: Other steampunk

Boosting Fleet of Fleece!

Beyond Victoriana - January 7, 2017 - 4:28pm


This February, the Airship Ashanti is organizing an event with other steampunk organizations to support Project Linus, which provides blankets for charity. Come and help those in need stay warm this winter and join the Fleet of Fleece, either by going to their event on February 11th, or reaching out to host one in your local community.

Filed under: Announcement, Beyond Victoriana Odds and Ends Tagged: airship ashanti, steampunk community
Categories: Other steampunk

Stewart J Breier posted a blog post

Steampunk Writers and Artists Guild - January 4, 2017 - 7:39am
Stewart J Breier posted a blog post
SwingjugendSwingjugend on my mind, a WWII subculture that effects my contemporary music listening.  From Swingjugend, I can go to punk, disco, and metal.Looking forward to adding more steam to my collection.http://holocaustmusic.ort.org/politics-and-propaganda/third-reich/swing-kids-behind-barbed-wire/See More
Categories: Other steampunk

Stewart J Breier posted a discussion

Steampunk Writers and Artists Guild - January 4, 2017 - 6:51am
Stewart J Breier posted a discussion
SwingjugendI thought the Swingjugend of WWII would make a fine addition to Steampunk.The Swingjugend rejected the Nazi state, above all because of its ideology and uniformity, its militarism, the 'Führer principle' and the leveling Volksgemeinschaft (people’s community).  http://holocaustmusic.ort.org/politics-and-propaganda/third-reich/swing-kids-behind-barbed-wire/See More
Categories: Other steampunk

Stewart J Breier posted a discussion

Steampunk Writers and Artists Guild - January 2, 2017 - 12:56am
Stewart J Breier posted a discussion
Emily Dickenson, LettersI am currently reading the Letters of Emily Dickenson.  Rightly, this may be considered Victoriana, however any and all may be possible by bringing Steampunk to our dear Emily.See More
Categories: Other steampunk

Amy Stanton is now a member of S.W.A.G

Steampunk Writers and Artists Guild - January 1, 2017 - 8:16pm
Amy Stanton is now a member of S.W.A.G
Categories: Other steampunk

New Years: 1928 & 2017

Dieselpunk - December 31, 2016 - 7:13pm
With this being the New Year holiday, I’m taking a break from the series on the Dieselpunk Lexicon. I’ll return to the Lexicon in my next post.

2017 promises to be an important year in the world affairs. Since as dieselpunks we look to the past to better understand the future, I thought I would look back on another major year in world history: 1928.

The year 1928 was one of those years that at the time seemed mundane but was actually important in that we saw events and trends that would dramatically change the world as well as some that strike some hauntingly similar trends today.

In the area of science and technology there were great advances. Following are a few:

Jan 1 1st US air-conditioned office building opens, San Antonio
Jan 13 RCA and GE install three test television sets in homes in Schenectady, New York allowing American inventor E.F.W. Alexanderson to demonstrate the first home television receiver which delivered a poor and unsteady 1.5 square inch picture
Feb 3 Paleoanthropologist Davidson Black reports his findings on the ancient human fossils found at Zhoukoudian, China in the journal Nature and declares them to be a new species he names 'Sinanthropus pekinensis' (now known as 'Homo erectus')
Feb 8 1st transatlantic TV image received, Hartsdale, NY
Jun 18 American aviator Amelia Earhart becomes the 1st woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean landing at Burry Port, Wales
Jul 2 The Jenkins Television Corporation (owned by Charles Jenkins) goes on air with W3XK, the first television broadcasting station in the USA
Jul 3 1st color TV broadcast in London
Jul 6 1st all-talking motion picture shown in NY (Lights of NY)
Jul 12 1st televised tennis match
Jul 30 George Eastman shows 1st color motion pictures (US)
Sep 15 Scottish bacteriologist Alexander Fleming discovers penicillin while studying influenza
Oct 15 German dirigible "Graf Zeppelin" lands in Lakehurst, NJ
Nov 18, Steamboat Willie was released
All year throughout the world radio stations popped up like dandelions after a rainstorm.

However, while science and technology advanced, the world political scene was dark and was getting darker.

Mar 15 Benito Mussolini modifies Italy electoral system (abolishes right to choose)
Apr 19 Japanese troops occupies Sjantung-schiereiland
May 12 Benito Mussolini ends women's rights in Italy
Oct 1 USSR launches its first 5-year plan
On Nov 6, Herbert Hoover was reelected to a second term. With the strong economy, the Republicans gained a strong majority in both the Senate and the House.

On this last note: It’s important to remember that less than a year after Hoover was reelected and the Republicans increased their majority in Congress, the US Stock Market crashed and the worst economic crisis of the modern world began.

Here’s wishing all of us a prosperous and joyous 2017!

Categories: Other steampunk

Steampunk Retrospective: Airship Ambassador’s 100th Milestone Interview Series

Beyond Victoriana - December 31, 2016 - 5:37pm

Photo Credit: Allison Stock Photography

To close out 2016, I’m boosting my steampunk comrade-in-arms Kevin Steil’s 100th interview on the Airship Ambassador (and here’s great snapshot of him from my wedding this year, where he served as the officiant!). He has been tirelessly tacking the steampunk community for the last six years, and has touched base with people he interviewed in the past (including yours truly) to see how their time in the community has been. Here’s the full ten part series, featuring Tee Morris and Pip Ballantine, Evan Butterfield, Gail Carriger, Jaymee Goh, James Ng, Mike Perschon, Richard Preston, Lev AC Rosen, Arthur Slade, Nick Valentino, and Jean-Christophe Valtat.

Cheers, and see you in 2017!

Filed under: Beyond Victoriana Odds and Ends, Interviews Tagged: steampunk community
Categories: Other steampunk


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