I make no secret about my belief that Steam and Punk are both important facets to the Steampunk philosophy and lifestyle. That combination of mindset and aesthetic makes Steampunk as beautiful as it is counter cultural.
The Steampunk Bible, edited by Jeff VanderMeer, was recently published and features some of the best in the many facets of Steampunk at present. This compendium of the movement is a beautiful and enlightening volume of which the subculture can be genuinely proud.
Introducing the Steampunk Bible is science fiction writer Bruce Sterling in his article, “The User’s Guide to Steampunk.” He offers some fantastic insight to Steampunk beyond Steam:
“Frankly, the heaviest guys in the Steampunk scene are not really all that into ‘steam.’ Instead, they are into punk. Specifically, punk’s do-it-yourself aspects and its determination to take the means of production away from big, mind-deadening companies who want to package and sell shrink-wrapped cultural products.”
– Bruce Sterling, from his essay “The User’s Guide to Steampunk” in The Steampunk Bible
I honestly couldn’t agree more with Sterling’s assessment, and so does Jake Von Slatt. Go here and read the entire article right now. Your views on and interpretations of Steampunk may be forever changed.