Sex and Science

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Modern gynotopian fiction is more realistic. One element that's shown up in most gynotopian stories for the last couple of decades: when there are very few men, or none, reproduction becomes a prime means of political control - and in most of these books and movies, no one has much compunction about trampling the civil rights of the men involved. Men naturally joke about how cool it would be to be the only man on earth, or to have a 10-to-1 ratio, but the fiction makes a convincing case that it would not actually be very much fun.
Also common to modern gynotopias is the practice of Lesbianism. In the Victorian era, gynotopias were imagined to be sexless and pure, and in the twentieth century, the natural assumption was that these women wanted sex desperately and so were eagerly awaiting men, who are of course the only people who could possibly provide it.


Delightful Science Fiction webcomic. Most human males have been killed by a plague, leaving women to fend for themselves in starships, war, and love. The storylines are full of both humor and angst and deal with Lesbian romance and soldierly camaraderie. I highly recommend it.

Men Are Trouble by James Patrick Kelly
A hardboiled private eye story set in a time when aliens have taken away all of the men of Earth.
"She studied her hands. I don't know why; they weren't doing anything. They were just sitting in her lap, minding their own business."

Sliders has an episode called "Love Gods". It shares elements with numerous other recent gynotopian stories: most of the world's men were killed by a virus created as a biological weapon released by Iraq, so the few who are left are precious commodities for their reproductive capacity. This world doesn't know anything about in vitro fertilization, so they have to do it the old-fashioned way. All fertile men are kept in compounds and forced to take hormones so that they can do their patriotic duty several times a day. The episode can be watched online at Netflix.

The Outer Limits has a gynotopian episode, Lithia. A man wakes after decades in cryogenic suspension to discover that there are no more men. Having just one man promptly divides everyone; some women want to get rid of him, others want to claim them for themselves, and many are simply curious. He promptly sets out to upset the established order by pointing out the injustices of the feudalistic government which has emerged and otherwise causes trouble.

The Last Man On Planet Earth
A chemical weapon gone berserk has killed almost all of the men left in the world. As in many gynotopian stories, the most educated, ambitious women decide that they like being in charge, so they outlaw males. Women become pregnant (with girl babies only) in laboratories and marry other women. The few men who still live are forced to live on reservations where they can't interfere with women's business, although very wealthy women can visit illegal brothels that offer the company of genuine, though ageing, men.
A handful of women are "closet heteros" who just can't adjust to Lesbianism despite decades of there being, you know, no men. There are pornographic holograms for these poor souls, but one of them, a bright young scientist, decides that it just isn't enough, so she breaks the law and creates a man. A massive manhunt ensues when his existence becomes known.
The most amusing bit was when a dishy FBI agent asked the scientist, "What are you? One of those closet heteros? It's okay, nothing to be ashamed of. You see everything in my business. Awful waste, though." I have to concur; if I had an FBI agent played by Tamlyn Tomita putting the make on me, I can't say that a dearth of males would bother me all that much.

Breathmoss
Science Fiction story.
"Once more, in that familiar welling, she felt sorry for him. Men were such strange, sad creatures; forever fighting, angry, lost...."
The point of this story seems to be that an all- (or mostly-) female society wouldn't be that much different from a bisexual one, except that divorcing sex (Lesbian sex occurs) from reproduction would erase the need for formally structured unions like marriage. Doing away with the institutions of marriage and the nuclear family, however, does not lead to some blissful utopia, just to a society without marriage. Children are raised in extended families called haramleks. There are only two male characters, who are regarded with wary tolerance.

Y: The Last Man On Earth
PDF file of the first issue.
This is a highly intelligent series about a plague that instantly kills all of the males on earth except one. It does contain the anti-Republican potshots which are apparently required by law and perpetuates the myth of Israeli female soldiers (in real life, a woman in the Israeli army is called a "filing clerk"), but in most respects this is a convincing exploration of how women might fare without men.
Here is a parody pretending that Y was based on a 60's romance comic.

Glory Season
In this futuristic science fiction novel, women are the majority on this matriarchal planet. The founder of the planet's society genetically engineered its inhabitants so that heterosexual intercourse usually triggers parthenogenesis. This novel falls into the "pleasant but stultifying" category of gynotopian speculation. It's also well written and a good read.
"Their aim wasn't to stop science as such, but to prevent a certain kind of scientific fever. A cultural madness, if you will. The sort of epoch in which questioning becomes almost a devotional act. In which all of life's certainties melt, and folk compulsively doubt old ways, heedless of whatever validity those ways once had. Ego and 'personal fulfillment' take precedence over values based on community and tradition."

The First Century After Beatrice by Amin Maalouf.
This one is actually a mostly-male society, but belongs in this category because of its themes.
From Amazon: "a popular drug that ensures women will give birth only to boys has sharply reduced the world's female population and cut fertility rates. The industrialized nations, seeking to curb Third World population growth, have encouraged the drug's use in poorer countries, which collapse economically. Men everywhere, frustrated sexually and deprived of normal family life, turn to violence and delinquency. An American televangelist launches a massive airlift of impoverished newborn girls from Brazil, Egypt and the Philippines, transporting them to Europe and the U.S., where ethnic protest riots subsequently erupt."

Zeta One is a badly made exploitation flick that makes very little sense. Human-looking alien women start kidnapping earth women, apparently to restore their own population; perhaps the aliens have become infertile. The movie is on this page because there is no evidence that there are any male aliens.

The Screwfly Solution by Raccoona Sheldon
Note: Raccoona Sheldon was a pen name for Alice Sheldon, better known as James Tiptree.
Aliens who wish to claim Earth for themselves kill all the women with a plague and subsequently wait for the men to die off.
Made into a "Masters of Horror" episode which can be viewed online at Netflix.

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