Names on Triton
In Samuel R. Delany’s book Trouble on Triton there doesn’t seem to be many similarities to our world. Things are still familiar to us as readers, but overall most things are practically alien to us. One of the things that I thought was different and interesting was the naming situation for the characters. We touched on this in class and I thought some of the points different people were bringing up were thoughtful and fascinating.
In this different world that Delany has created, some people are able to choose their own name or their name is taken from their parents’ last name (so their parents’ last name becomes their first name).
In the Spike’s case, her name was given to her by her friends, “My friends call me the Spike,” (Delany 18). This could be considered like a nick name that we might give to family or friends.
For the Spike, this is almost like a stage name for her, “But the Spike, at any rate, is quite real. I’ve always wanted to see one of her productions,” (Delany 22). We do see this today in our world with various actors or other performers that change their name when they get into acting or singing. For example, Lady Gaga, obviously, isn’t the singer’s real name, but it’s the name that she uses now as a performer. In a similar way to Lady Gaga, the Spike has a name for acting. In a way, she chose her own identity when she took on the name. She chose who she wanted to be through her name.
Delany, Samuel R. Trouble on Triton: An Ambiguous Heterotopia. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan UP, 1996. Print.