Paolo Bacigalupi's NebulaAward–Winning The Windup Girl (2009) has been praised as an exciting new approach to ecofiction, but it also contains problematic representations of gender and race that can be traced to the origins of science fiction as a literary genre. The emergence of science fiction also occurred alongside a tendency to assign a uniform Italian ethnicity to immigrant groups regardless of their own self-identification. This article uses Bacigalupi's novel to consider how unfortunate legacies of colonialism and sexual violence from the earliest science fictions can create a troublesome backdrop for newer works that deal with critical social and political problems. A new means of representing personal identities might enable the development of an Italian American speculative fiction that could prevent future harms and recuperate past experiences of inequity.

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