Just a taste of many things steampunk…

What is Steampunk?

Art meets science, with a touch of whimsy; what could be more glorious?
Steampunk is the name given to a genre of fantasy or alternative historical stories – usually set in the 19th century or an alternative future reminiscent of the 19th century – with the science fiction element  containing modern technology powered by steam. The amount of steam and gadgetry is variable. Sometimes supernatural themes may be incorporated.

Think of it as retro-futurism with a Victorian science fiction twist.

In reality steampunk is more complex. It is a creative movement re-imagining analog technologies, mechanics and inventions – powered by steam – and set in the industrialised 19th century, often incorporating cool clothing. Stories often have a punk element, challenging social norms of the time. It  It now encompasses not only fiction, but art, fashion, music, cinema/TV and fandom.

Steampunk can be many things to many people. This is what makes it so much fun. Here are a few more interpretations:

The Aesthetic

Google defines aesthetic as a set of principles underlying the work of a particular artist or artistic movement.  So how does steampunk actually look and feel? The most obvious is the Victorianesque attire, the gadgets and all pervading gears and goggles. It is what you make it.

 The Writing

The first appearance of the word steampunk was in Locus Magazine in 1987. The term was coined by SF author K W Jeter to define specific speculative fiction works and is a tongue-in-cheek variant on cyberpunk. It is usually a subset of the science fiction or fantasy genres.

A Few Books

Steampunk Pages/ Blogs/Magazines:

Steampunk-related Movies

  • Stardust
  • Hugo
  • Adele Blanc-Sec
  • The Prestige
  • The Aeronaut
  • Mortal Engines
  • League of Extraodinary Gentlemen
  • Wild, Wild West
  • Sherlock Holmes
  • Young Sherlock Holmes
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events
  • Steamboy
  • The Golden Compass
  • City of Ember
  • The Time Machine
  • Around the World in Eighty Days
  • Van Helsing

Steampunk Music

Steampunk Events

Check out the Steampunk Events Page for a  list of Australian/New Zealand events and  watch past events I’ve attended here.

Some Local Steampunk Groups

UPDATED May, 2017

You can find another list of Australian Steampunk groups and events at The Unorthodox Society for the Elucidation of Retro-futurism.

Steampunk was originally published on karen j carlisle