Joyce Carol Oates’s short story “Fossil-Figures” from the collection The Corn Maiden and Other Nightmares won a World Fantasy Award in 2011. Her story collection Haunted: Tales of the Grotesque was a finalist for the collection award in 1995. The award itself is a bust of H.P. Lovecraft.

The following is a Twitter conversation on the news that the Lovecraft statue will no longer be used for the award.


#WFC2015 #wfcon2015 David Hartwell just announced this is the last year the World Fantasy Award will be the H.P.Lovecraft statue!


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 8

Joyce Carol Oates Retweeted EK Tremontaine
Why is that? I have a wonderfully weird Lovecraft statuette gazing at me right now & it is very inspiring.


ekEK Tremontaine ‏@EllenKushner  Nov 8Manhattan, NY

@JoyceCarolOates @Isegoria This by @Nnedi explains it very clearly. Many of us were unaware of HPL’s ghastliness! 


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

Have been informed that it is H.P. Lovecraft’s notorious racism & misogyny that have led to repudiation of his image for fantasy award.


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

Long ago I’d written an essay (“‘At Least I’ve Made a Woman of Her’: Images of Women in Yeats, Faulkner, Lawrence”) which is essentially


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

about how a (woman) writer deals w/ sexism in the literary tradition; Lovecraft is a similar though not identical case. Problem is, so much


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

of the canon is saturated w/ racism, sexism, anti-semitism, anti-democracy (to put it mildly) & lunacy, to toss it all out is no solution.


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

Lovecraft differs in degree but not in kind from racism/anti-Semitism of Ezra Pound, T.S. Eliot, Jack London, Hemingway & many, many more.


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

Cleopatra sniffing suspiciously at H.P. Lovecraft (statuette), World Fantasy Award 2011.

Cleopatra and Lovecraft


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

Some of us concentrate on the originality, significance, & worth of the work, & ignore the biographical; though, in Pound, difficult.


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

We would probably discover that Poe was a racist also, & we know he was “attracted” to young girls, yet–not to read Poe? no Poe awards?


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

Re. Lovecraft/ World Fantasy Award: no need for any individual writer to be attached to this. Avoiding specificity most pragmatic.


Ellen Datlow ‏@EllenDatlow  Nov 9

@JoyceCarolOates None will.


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

Disgraced deceased Master of Weird gazing wistfully upon live Bengal kitten vigorously doing her laundry.

Cleopatra and Lovecraft 2


Joyce Carol Oates@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

Time for a new World Fantasy Award! Lovecraft who’d died in obscurity, of malnutrition/ stomach cancer, would have been astonished that any


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

of us even know his name in 2015, let alone consider him “controversial.”


Joyce Carol Oates ‏@JoyceCarolOates  Nov 9

Farewell, “eldritch.” We surrender you to the Void where you will await us.


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