Chapter 6. It’s About Chickens and Teapots

Our historian does what he does best! James journeys into the heart of steampunk and beyond, following and even tugging at the threads of cultural change. He starts with the steampunk of the matter: just what is this steampunk thing, really?

History is a family affair with the Carrott family. James brings his daughters Mimi and Beatrix along as he investigates the details and corners of stempunk culture. Seven year-old Mimi has an insight, and from there James agrees he must press on.

The first order of business is to define: “What is steampunk?” Not an easy task. James tracks down Mike Perschon, the “Steampunk Scholar,” to get a firm grounding in what he needs to know, then dives into the world of steampunk conventions. After making his way through some poetry we make our way to Canada for the Victoria Steam Expo where we get a different perspective from the convention’s ringmaster, Jordan Stratford.

But it all starts with a cup of chicken tea.

Chicken Tea Is Clucking Good

James H. Carrott (Seattle, WA)

I absolutely refuse to believe your perfectly logical explanation. Mine is far more poetical and therefore speaks of a greater truth.

Algernon Swinburne from Mark Hodder Expedition to the Mountains of the Moon (2012)

Steampunk is a highly visual creature. Plug the term into a search engine set for images (give audience-appropriate consideration to “safe” settings—where there’s pop there’s porn) and you’ll come up with more costumery, illustration, ...

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