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Superhero Name

Real Name

super power(s)

4-D

Captain Lea Corbin


6 Million Dollar Man

Steve Austin

bionic powers

Abattoir

Arnold Etchison


Abel

Abel, Keeper of Secrets, Abel, the first-born man (Sandman)


Access

Axel Asher Amalgam Comics


Ace

Female Android, Male Android (Batman Beyond) member of the Royal Flush Gang


Ahwehotah

Max Crandall


Air Wave

Larry Jordan, Helen Jordan, Harold "Hal" Jordan


Alchemist

Jan Arrah


Alias the Spider

Tom Ludlow Hallaway


Alpha Centurion

Marcus Aelius


Amazing Man

Will Everett, Will Everett Junior


Amazo

an android


Americommando

Tex Thompson


Americop

Bartholomew “Bart” Gallows

martial arts, lots of weapons

Anarchist

Tike Alicar

massive OCD, sweats acid

Anarky

Lonnie Machin


Angle Man

Angelo Bend


Animal Man

Bernhard "Buddy" Baker

can mimic any animal trait

Anole

Victor Borkowski

"Spiked carapace on head, sticky prehensile tongue, able to cling to solid surfaces, able to camouflage his skin to match almost any surface."

Aquagirl

Tula, Lorena Marquez


Aquaman

Orin or Arthur Curry (adopted name)

summons sea creatures

Argent

Toni Monetti


Armor

Jack Keaton

pieces of armor forms different weapons, extraterrestrial martial arts expert

Arrowette

Cissie King-Jones


Arsenal

Roy Harper


Atlas

Jim Randall

superhuman strength, agility

Atom Smasher

Al Rothstein


Atomic Knight

Gardner Grayle


Atomic Man

Adam Mann

strength, flies, can fire gamma rays when not wearing lead glove

Atomic Sub

Dr.Noah Talbot

has jetpack, can survive underwater, strength

Atomic Thunderbolt

William Burns

flies, fires bolts of atomic energy

Azrael

Jean Paul Valley


Aztek

Uno or Curt Falconer (alias)


Backhand

Greg Mattingly

strength, endurance, can deflect powers back to the source

Backlash

Marc Slayton

immortality, martial arts, superhuman agility

Bad Kitty

Catherine Bell

avenging cop

Badrock

Thomas John McCall

strength, good reflexes

Bagabond

Suzanne Melotti

controls animals

Ballistic

Cassandra Lane

athletic ability, good aim

Banshee

Sean Cassidy

san scream supersonically, also can hover & fly at the speed of sound

Batgirl

Barbara Gordon (who later becomes Oracle), Helena Bertinelli, Cassandra Cain, Barbara Wilson (Batman and Robin)

martial arts expert, language skills

Batman

Bruce Wayne, Jean Paul Valley (known as "Azbat"), Dick Grayson (temporary), Terry McGinnis (TV Series Batman Beyond, JLU (some episodes)

general ass-kicking, has nifty toys

Battalion

Jackson King

telekenetic, can blow stuff up

Battering Ram

unknown

can smash through anything

Batwoman

Kathy Kane


Beast

Henry "Hank" P. McCoy

turns into a big blue beast- superhuman strength, agility

Beast Boy

Garfield Logan


Big Barda

Barda Free


Big E

Percy Pilbeam

really smart, supertough skin, limitless strength

Black Adam

Teth-Adam, Theo Adam


Black Canary

Dinah Lance


Black Condor

Richard Grey Jr., Ryan Kendall


Black Lightning

Jefferson Pierce


Black Mask

Roman Sionis


Black Racer

Sgt. Willie Walker


Black Spider

Johnny LaMonica


Blackhawk

Janos Prohaska


Blue Beetle

Dan Garrett, Ted Kord, Jaime Reyes


Blue Devil

Daniel Patrick Cassidy


Blue Jay

Jay Abrams


Booster Gold

Michael Jon Carter


Brain Wave/Brainwave

Henry King Sr., Henry King Jr.


Bronze Tiger

Ben Turner


Brutale

Guillermo Barrera


Bulletgirl

Susan Kent-Barr


Bulletman

Jim Barr


Bumblebee

Karen Beecher-Duncan


Bushido

Ryuko Orsono


Cain

Cain, Keeper of Mysteries


Captain America

Steven Rogers

has an indestructible shield, strength, agility martial arts, etc.

Captain Atom

Captain Allen Adam

doesn't need to breathe, can fly unaided through space

Captain Britain

Brian Braddock

energy storage, flight, super strength

Captain Canada

Daniel Eaton

sweet suit that does all sorts of stuff

Captain Canuck

Tom Evans

strength, speed

Captain Canuck (00s)

David Semple

gymnast, policeman

Captain Canuck (90s)

Darren Oak

good at hand to hand combat

Captain Comet

Adam Blake


Captain Conquest

Flash Dale

immune to radiation, flies, super senses

Captain Flag

Tom Townsend

has an outfit made from a flag

Captain Flash

Keith Spencer

doesn't get injured, speed, strength

Captain Freedom

Don Wright

good fighter

Captain Marvel

Billy Batson

world's mightiest mortal

Captain Marvel Jr.

Freddy Freeman


Captain Triumph

Lance Gallant


Catgirl

Carrie Kelley (DKR alternate storyline)


Catwoman

Selina Kyle

general ass-kicking

Charaxes

Drury Walker


Chief

Niles Caulder


Cinnamon

Katherine Manser

had throwing star, ass-kicks

Clayface

Basil Karlo, Matt Hagen, Preston Payne, Sondra Fuller, Cassius "Clay" Payne


Collective Man

Han, Chang, Lin, Sun and Ho Tao-Yu

bunch of guys can form a single super being

Colossus

Piotr Nikolaievitch Rasputin

can turn skin into steel armor. Superhuman strength & agillity

Commander Steel

Henry "Hank" Heywood I


Coronary

James Sharp

controls peoples' metabolic functions, stretches limbs, walks through objects

Creeper

Jack Ryder


Crimson Avenger

Lee Travis, Albert Elwood


Crimson Fox

Vivian D'Aramis, Constance D'Aramis


Cyborg

Victor Stone


Cyclops

Scott Summers

X-man, optic blasts that fire whenever he opens his eyes.

Damage

Grant Emerson


Daredevil

Matthew Michael Murdock

superhuman senses of smell, touch, hearing and taste

Deadman

Boston Brand


Deadshot

Floyd Lawton


Deathstroke, the Terminator

Slade Wilson


Doctor Druid

Anthony Ludgate Druid

telekinesis, can mesmerize people, occult magic, telepathy

Doctor Fate

Kent Nelson, Eric and Linda Strauss, Inza Nelson, Hector Hall


Doctor Light

Dr. Kimiyo Hoshi


Doctor Midnight

Dr. Beth Chapel


Doctor Mid-Nite

Dr. Charles McNider, Dr. Pieter Cross


Doctor Mist

Nommo


Doctor Occult

Richard Occult


Doll Girl

Martha Roberts


Doll Man

Darrell Dane


Doorman

DeMarr Davis

opens portals through solid objects, levitates and sort of flies

Dove

Don Hall, Dawn Granger, Wiley Wolverman


Dyna-Mite

Daniel Dunbar


Elasti-Girl

Rita Farr


Elongated Man

Ralph Dibny


Emma Frost

Emma Grace Frost

reads minds, can project her throughts into others' minds

Empress

Anita Fite


Eradicator

David Connor


Etrigan the Demon

Jason Blood


Fate

Jared Stevens


Fire

Beatriz DaCosta


Firebrand

Rod Reilly, Dannette Reilly, Alex Sanchez


Firehawk

Lorraine Reilly


Firestorm

Ronald "Ronnie" Raymond, Professor Martin Stein, Jason Rusch

manipulates radiation and transmutes the molecular structure of inorganic matter.

Flamebird

Bette Kane


Fury

Helena Kosmatos, Lyta Hall


Gabriel, Devil Hunter

Possibly Gabriel Rosetti

performs exorcisms, writes a gossip column.

General Glory

Joseph Jones


Geo-Force

Brion Markov


Glob

Major Dan Stone


Gold

Mike Magnus


Golden Eagle

Charley Parker


Grace

Grace Choi


Green Arrow

Oliver Queen, Connor Hawke

good with a bow & arrow

Green Goblin

Phillip Urich

superhuman strength, agility

Green Lantern

Alan Scott, Hal Jordan, Kyle Rayner, John Stewart, Guy Gardner

has the ring of power

Guardian

Jim Harper


Gypsy

Cindy Reynolds


Hawkgirl

Shiera Saunders, Kendra Sanders

flies, ass-kicks

Hawkman

Carter Hall

immortality (kind of), speed, agility, flies

Ice

Tora Olafsdotter


Iceman

Robert "Bobby" Louis Drake

can freeze stuff and turn air moisture into ladders & things

Impulse

Bart Allen


Incredible Hulk

Robert Bruce Banner

ass-kicking, turns big and green.

Ion

Kyle Rayner


Isis

Andrea Thomas


Jade

Jenny-Lynn Hayden

has emerald-energy based powers

Jubilee

Jubilation Lee

"can generate multi-colored globules of energy plasma" can detonate stuff on a molecular level

Juggernaut

Cain Marko

can smash through anything

Kid Flash

Wally West, Bart Allen


Kitty Pryde

Katherine "Kitty" Pryde

can "phase" through solid matter

Man-Bat

Robert Kirkland 'Kirk' Langstrom


Martian Manhunter

J'onn J'onzz


Mary Marvel

Mary Batson


Mathemaniac

unknown

projects abstract mathematical information into his victim's brain overwhelming his victim with the information.

Metamorpho

Rex Mason


Mockingbird

Barbara “Bobbi” Morse Barton

kicks ass, cool weapons

Mr. Fantastic

Reed Richards

can stretch body or limbs a lot,

Mr. Miracle

Scott Free


Mr. Terrific

Terry Sloane, Michael Holt


Multiple Man

James Arthur "Jamie" Madrox

creates living copies of himself.

Nemesis

Jane St. Ives

flies and is immortal, but only with magic sword

Night Crawler

Kurt Wagner

teleportation, can become invisible and walk up walls.

Nighthawk

Hannibal Hawkes

good with weapons, hand-to-hand combat

Nightwing

Richard "Dick" Grayson, Jason Todd


Parallax

Hal Jordan


Phat

William Robert Reilly

can "stretch fat deposits in his body to make himself larger", amateur rapper

Plastic Man

Patrick "Eel" O'Brian

is stretchy

Radioactive Man

Dr. Chen Lu

strength, projects radiation

Riddler

Edward Nygma


Robin

Dick Grayson, Jason Todd, Tim Drake, Stephanie Brown, Carrie Kelley (DKR alternate storyline)

ass-kicking, acrobatics

Rogue

Anna Marie

can absorb other peoples memories & anticipate what they're about to do

Sasquatch

Dr. Walter Langkowski

strength, endurance, agility

Shamrock

Molly Fitzgerald

"good luck power" caused by dead souls

Slapstick

Steven Harmon

"all of the abilities of a Saturday morning cartoon character"

Songbird

Melissa Joan Gold

cybernetic vocal cords-- can mess with peoples' emotions & mental state

Spectre

James Brendan "Jim" Corrigan, Hal Jordan, Crispus Allen


Speedball

Robert "Robbie" Baldwin

repels energy blasts and projectiles with kinetic energy force field

Spiderman

Peter Parker

climbs up walls, can squirt spiderwebs, spidey sense, super-bendy

Spirit of '76

William Nasland

ass-kicking, bullet-and fireproof cape

Stargirl

Courtney Whitmore


Starman

Ted Knight, David Knight, Jack Knight


Steel

Henry Heywood I, Henry "Hank" Heywood III, John Henry Irons, Natasha Irons


Superman

Clark Kent

flies, x-ray vision, speed, etc.

Takion

Joshua Sanders


The Atom

Albert "Al" Pratt, Ramond "Ray" Palmer, Adam Cray


The Avenger (1930's adventurer)

Richard Henry Benson

mutates face to look like anyone

the Avenger (1980's enemy of Ultra-Man)

Paul Cannon

has a high-tech energy-shooting lance

The Badger

Norbert Sykes

martial arts expert

The Bee

Barry Eames

flies, strong, controls large bee army, stings

The Flash

Jay Garrick, Barry Allen, Wallace Rudolph "Wally" West

really fast

The Question

Charles Victor Szasz (a.k.a. Vic Sage)


Troia

Donna Troy


Two-Face

Harvey Dent


Tyroc

Troy Stewart


U-Go-Girl

Edith Constance Sawyer

teleportation

Valkyrie

Samantha Parrington

strength, armor-plated bra

Warrior

Guy Gardner


Wiccan

William "Billy" Kaplan

casts spells, flies, can generate lightning

Wonder Girl

Donna Troy, Cassie Sandsmark


Wonder Woman

Princess Diana, Queen Hippolyta

ass-kicking, has magic stuff



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Copyright 1996,1997,1998,1999,2000,2001,2002,2003,2004 by Magic Dragon Multimedia.
All rights reserved Worldwide. May not be reproduced without permission.
May be posted electronically provided that it is transmitted unaltered, in its entirety, and without charge. Just over 455 Kilobytes of text: may load VERY slowly Most recently updated: 7 February 2004 Ever loved a book or story, and been unable to find another quite like it? Maybe we at Magic Dragon Multimedia can help to steer you in the right direction...

START HERE IF YOU KNOW WHAT SUBGENRE CATEGORY YOU LIKE

ALIENS ON EARTH: they came from outer space ALTERNATE WORLDS: history might have happened differently ANTIGRAVITY: what goes up may not come down BAMBI'S CHILDREN: animals who speak, think, or act human BEAM ME UP: matter transmission, techno-teleportation BEYOND THE FIELDS WE KNOW: magical world unconnected to ours CITIES OF THE FUTURE: bigger, better, and more astonishing urban visions CLONES: stories of genetic engineering, especially of people CYBER PUNK: 239 gritty near-future tales of hackers and cyberspace DEFINITIONS: what is science fiction? DEFINITIONS: what is fantasy? DYSTOPIA: really, really bad futures (opposite of "Utopia") ECOLOGY: books, stories, and films about Ecology and Biology EXTRA-SENSORY PERCEPTION: telepathy, psi, other paths to the mind FASTER THAN LIGHT: impossibly fast travel, beyond the Einstein barrier FEMINIST: science fiction and fantasy of, by, or for women HARD SCIENCE FICTION: based on real science & engineering HEROIC FANTASY: also known as "Swords & Sorcery" HORROR: that old black magic, the really scary stuff IMMORTALITY: Those who live forever, or try to INVISIBILITY: Mostly about people who can't be seen LOST LANDS/LOST RACE: neoprimitive place/people discovered MATHEMATICS: Fantasy and Science Fiction about Mathematics NEW! [5 Feb 04] MYTHOLOGY: Mythology and Science Fiction or Fantasy about Religion POLITICS: science fiction about social and political concerns SEX: science fiction authors who also write erotica SPACE OPERA: battles between planets and stars SPACE TRAVEL: rockets to asteroids, moons, planets, stars SUPERMEN: extra powers make characters more than human THEOLOGY: Science Fiction or Fantasy about Religion [NEW: 12 Aug 98] THERE AND BACK AGAIN: leave our world for a more magical one TIME TRAVEL: time machines, travel to the past or the future: NEW LINKS! TV and MOVIE: books spun-off from television series or sc-fi films UNDER THE SEA: submarines, undersea cities, underwater living UNICORNS IN THE GARDEN: magic events within our mundane world UTOPIA: Fictional and Nonfictional glimpses of an ideal future WORLD COMES TO AN END: no more civilization, or people, or worse... YOU CAN TELL A BOOK BY ITS COVER: science fiction, fantasy, horror
SEND YOUR INFORMATION/URL/LINK to THE ULTIMATE SCIENCE FICTION WEB GUIDE. We will review your information and add it to this list if appropriate.

START HERE IF YOU ONLY REMEMBER WHAT THE BOOK COVER LOOKED LIKE

David Hartwell supplied the quotations here, Your Humble Webmaster did the rest...
  1. "Futuristic Mechanical Devices?" Try HARD SCIENCE FICTION, but it might be a trick to get you to read any kind of science fiction.
  2. "Humans Against a Futuristic Setting, With or Without Machines?" Try SPACE OPERA, but it might be some related Adventure science fiction.
  3. "Humans Carrying Swords or Other Anachronistic Weapons?" Try THERE AND BACK AGAIN or UNICORNS IN THE GARDEN, but it might be any kind of "fantasy or fantastic adventure against a cardboard or cliched SF background."
  4. "Hypermuscled Males Carrying Big Swords and Adorned with Hyperzaftig Females, Both Scant-Clad Against a Threatening Monstrous background?" Almost certainly HEROIC FANTASY, also known as "Swords & Sorcery".
  5. Skulls, Discolored Flesh, Sharp Teeth? Try HORROR: that old black magic, the really scary stuff.
  6. Flying Saucers, Ray Guns, Tentacles, or Bug Eyed Monsters? Try ALIENS ON EARTH:.
  7. Historical Figures in Strange Combinations, Such as Elvis With Hitler, or Civil War Soldiers Carrying Machine Guns? Try ALTERNATE WORLDS.
  8. Cute Furry Animals, No Humans? Try BAMBI'S CHILDREN.
  9. Exotic Flowery Landscape, Perhaps with Castles? Try BEYOND THE FIELDS WE KNOW.
  10. Futuristic Buildings, Weirdly Dressed People Looking Scared or Furtive? Try CYBER PUNK, DYSTOPIA, or CITIES OF THE FUTURE.
  11. Several Identical People, or Emphasis on Glowing Eyes? Try CLONES or EXTRA-SENSORY PERCEPTION.

Definitions of "Science Fiction"

And what do we even mean by "science fiction" anyway? In one sense, the first article to define the field was published over 150 years ago, before the field was widely ackonwledged to exist: New Species of Literature "We learn that Mr. R. A. Locke, the ingenious author of the late 'Moon Story' or 'Astronomical Hoax,' is putting on the stocks the frame of a new novel on a subject similar to that of his recent able invention in astronomy.... His style is nearly as original as his conception. It is ornamented and highly imaginative. He may be said to be the inventor of an entirely new species of literature, which we may call the 'scientific novel'.... We have had crowds of 'fashionable novels'; but fictitious history, founded on the discoveries and scientific hypotheses of the day has seldom been attempted until Mr.Locke did so. In fact, Mr.Locke has opened a new vein, as original, as curious, as beautiful, as any of the greatest geniuses who ever wrote. He looks forward into futurity, and adapts his characters to the light of science." [New York Herald, 5 September 1835] Two websites of definitions are: Definitions of "Science Fiction" @panix.com Definitions of "Science Fiction" @webco.com Some particularly good definitions are:
  1. "By 'scientifiction' I mean the Jules Verne, H.G. Wells and Edgar Allan Poe type of story -- a charming romance intermingled with scientific fact and prophetic vision." -- Hugo Gernsback, in "Amazing Stories" (April 1926)
  2. "Science Fiction is a branch of fantasy identifiable by the fact that it eases the 'willing suspension of disbelief' on the part of its readers by utilizing an atmosphere of scientific credibility for its imaginative speculations in physical science, space, time, social science, and philosophy." -- Sam Moskowitz, in "Explorers of the Infinite" (1963)
  3. "We might try to define science fiction in this broader sense as fiction based upon scientific or pseudo-scientific assumptions (space-travel, robots, telepathy, earthly immortality, and so forth) or laid in any patently unreal though non-supernatural setting (the future, or another world, and so forth)." -- L. Sprague de Camp, in "Science Fiction Handbook" (1953)
  4. "A science fiction story is a story built around human beings, with a human problem, and a human solution, which would not have happened at all without its speculative scientific content." -- Theodore Sturgeon, as amended by Damon Knight, in "A Century of Science Fiction" (1962)
  5. "Science fiction is that branch of literature which is concerned with the impact of scientific advance upon human beings." -- Isaac Asimov, in "Modern Science Fiction", edited by Reginald Bretnor (1953)
  6. "Science fiction is that branch of literature wthat deals with human responses to changes in the level of science and technology." -- Isaac Asimov, in "Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine" (Mar-Apr 1978)
  7. "Science fiction is that class of prose narrative wtreating of a situation that could not arise in the world we know, but which is hypothesized on the basis of some innovation in science or technology, or pseudo-science or pseudo-technology, whether human or extraterrestrial in origin." -- Kingsley Amis, in "New Maps of Hell" (1961)
  8. "Science fiction is the search for a definition of man and his status in the universe which will stand in our advanced but confused state of knowledge (science), and is cast in the Gothic or post-Gothic mould." -- Brian W. Aldiss, in "Billion Year Spree" (1973)
  9. "A literary genre developed principally in the 20th Century, dealing with scientific discovery or development that, whether set in the future, or the fictitious present, or in the putative past, is superior to or simply other than that known to exist." -- Fred Saberhagen, in "Encyclopedia Britannica" 15th edition (1979)
  10. "The branch of fiction that deals with the possible effects of an altered technology or social system on mankind in an imagined future, an altered present, or an alternative past." -- Barry M. Malzberg, in "Collier's Encyclopedia" (1981)
  11. "Science fiction deals with improbable possibilities, fantasy with plausible impossibilities." -- Miriam Allen deFord, in "Elsewhere, Elsewhen, Elsehow" (1971)
  12. "A piece of science fiction is a narrative of an imaginary invention or discovery in the natural sciences and consequent adventures and experience." -- J. O. Bailey, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.256, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982)
  13. "[Fiction] in which the author shows awareness of the nature and importance of the human activity known as the scientific method, and shows equal awareness of the great body of knowledge already collected through that activity, and takes into account in his stories the effect and possible future effects on human beings of scientific methods and scientific fact." -- Reginald Bretnor, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.257, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982)
  14. "Science fiction is a label applied to a publishing category and its application is subject to the whims of editors and publishers." -- John Clute & Peter Nichols, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.257, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982)
  15. "A handy short definition of almost all science fiction might read: realistic speculation about possible future events, based solidly on adequate knowledge of the real world, past and present, and on a thorough understanding of the scientific method. To make the definition cover all science fiction (instead of 'almost all') it is necessary only to strike out the word 'future'." -- Robert Heinlein, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.257, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982)
  16. "Speculative fiction: stories whose objective is to explore, to discover, to learn, by means of projection, extrapolation, analogue, hypothesis-and-paper-experimentation, something about the nature of the universe, of man, of 'reality'." -- Judith Merrill, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.257, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982)
  17. "It is that thing that people who understand science fiction point to, when they point to something and say 'That's science fiction!" -- Frederik Pohl, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.257, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982)
  18. "Science fiction is hard to define because it is the literature of change and it changes while you are trying to define it." -- Tom Shippey, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.258, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982)
  19. "There is only one definition of science fiction that seems to make pragmatic sense: 'Science fiction is anything published as science fiction'." -- Norman Spinrad, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.257, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982)
  20. "A literary genre whose necessary and sufficient conditions are the presence and interaction of estrangement and congnition, and whose main formal device is an imaginative framework alternative to the author's empirical environment." -- Darko Suvin, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.258, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982); this is a particularly often-cited definition in the academic study of science fiction
  21. "Science fiction is that branch of fantasy which, while not true of present-day knowledge, is rendered plausible by the reader's recognition of the scientific possibilities of it being possible at some future date or at some uncertain period in the past." -- Donald A. Wollheim, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.258, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982)
  22. "Science fiction is a label applied to a publishing category and its application is subject to the whims of editors and publishers." -- John Clute & Peter Nichols, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.257, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982)
  23. xxxx, in "yyyy" (19zz)
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Definitions of "Fantasy"

And what do we even mean by "Fantasy" anyway?
  1. First of all, we distinguish between "Science Fiction" and "Fantasy" in that "Science Fiction", as defined elsewhere in this page (DEFINITIONS: what is science fiction?) involves strangeness extrapolated from science and technology, rather than contrary to natural law. Fantasy, according to Callois, presumes the unbreakable laws of nature, as anlyzed by human reason, to be un-naturally or uncannily violated. "It should be particularly stressed that the fantastic makes no sense in an out-and-out strange world. To imagine the fantastic in it is even impossible. In a world full of marvels the extraordinary loses its power." -- Roger Callois, "Au couer du fantastique" (Paris: 1965); "Images, images... Essais sur le role et les pouvoirs de l'imagination" (Paris: 1966)
  2. "The fantastic is always a break in the acknowledged order, an irruption of the inadmissable within the changeless everyday legality." -- Roger Callois, "Au couer du fantastique" (1965); "Images, images" (1966) To Callois, the presence of a unicorn in a garden, or something else strange into the familiar world, causes "the impression of irreducible strangeness."
  3. The fantastic in literature doesn't exist as a challenge to what is probable, but only there where it can be increased to a challenge of reason itself: the fantastic in literature consists, when all has been said, essentially in showing the world as opaque, as inaccessible to reason on principle. This happens when [the artist] Piranesi in his imagine prisons [Carceri] depicts a world peopled by other beings than those for which it was created." -- Lars Gustafsson "On the Fantastic in Literature", in "Utopier och andra essaer om 'dikt' och 'Liv'", [Stockholm: 1969]
  4. Alternatively, the fantastic is in the text itself, and depends upon the degree to which the characters in the story are themselves in doubt as to whether they have experienced the supernatural, or merely an illusion of their imaginations: "The fantastic occupies the duration of this uncertainty. Once we choose one answer or the other, we leave the fantastic for a neighboring genre, the uncanny or the marvellous. The fantastic is the hesitation experienced by a person who knows only the laws of nature, confronting an apparently supernatural event." -- Tzvetan Todorov, in "The Fantastic: A Structural Approach to a Literary Genre", translated by Richard Howard, Ithaca NY: 1975, p.25
  5. "A fiction evoking wonder and containing a substantial and irreducible element of supernatural or impossible worlds, beings, or objects with which the reader or the characters within the story become on at least familiar terms." -- C. N. Manlove, "Modern Fantasy: Five Studies", London: 1975, pp.10-11
  6. "Fantasy is a natural human activity. It certainly does not destroy or even insult Reason; and it does not either blunt the appetite for, nor obscure the perception of, scientific verity. On the contrary: the keener and clearer is the reason, the better fantasy it will make. If men were ever in a state in which they did not want to know or could not perceive the truth (facts or evidence), then Fantasy would languish until they were cured. If they ever got into that state (it would not seem at all impossible), Fantasy will perish, and become Morbid Delusion." -- J. R. R. Tolkien, "On Fairy Stories", in "Tree and Leaf", [London: 1964, New York: 1965]
  7. {to be done}
  8. xxxxxxxx
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ALIENS ON EARTH:

they came from outer space The actual title "Aliens on Earth" was first used by John Tayne, as a nonfiction article, in "Authentic Science Fiction" #55, March 1955 -- but this subgenre has long been a popular one. Arguably the first novel of aliens visiting Earth was "Micromegas", by Voltaire (1750). A giant from Sirius and a giant from Saturn come to our home planet, make satirical obervations, and humble our puny philosphy and mental capacity. Peter Nichols, in "The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction," asserts that the first story of hostile aliens invading Earth was "The Germ Growers", by the Australian clergyman Robert Potter (1892). It wasn't until 6 years later that H. G. Wells published the vastly more popular and influential "The War of the Worlds."
ALIENS: list of 32 movies/TV movies with Aliens, last updated 2 March 1997 Some recommended books on Aliens on Earth include, by order of publication:
  1. "Auf Zwei Planeten", by Kurd Lasswitz (1897) Perhaps the first modern science fiction novel to describe first contact between human and ET, with some concern for linguistic problems, was "Two Planets" by Kurd Lasswitz, published in German in 1897 ["Two Planets", Kurd Lasswitz, published in German under the original title "Auf Zwei Planeten", Lepzig: Verlag B. Elischer Nachfolger, 1897; translated in English Carbondale: Southern Illinois Press, 1971] The human protagonists (Saltner and Grunthe) meet Martians ("Nume") who have colonized Earth's North and South Poles. The Martians look very human, and Saltner saves and falls in love with the female Martian "La." Lasswitz' "Two Planets"
  2. "The War of the Worlds", by H. G. Wells (1898)
  3. "The Puppet Masters", by Robert A. Heinlein (1951)
  4. "The Day of the Triffids", by John Wyndham (1951)
  5. "Invaders of Earth", by Groff Conklin [editor] (1952) (New York: Vanguard) Theme anthology of 22 aliens-on-Earth stories (from late 1940s and early 1950s)
  6. "Childhood's End", by Arthur C. Clarke (New York: Houghton-Mifflin, 1953) In the classic novel Childhood's End, Arthur C. Clarke outlines a race of beings superior to human beings, who effortlessly communicate with us, but achieve their mysterious goals by educating human children to attain super-human powers, until our children's behavior passes beyond that of human and alien alike. On the same theme, Arthur C. Clarke's book 2001, and the film made in collaboration with director Stanley Kubrick, involve human-ET communication which results in one man transcending human limits and human understanding. The inverse of this occurs in the short story "The Children's Hour96" by Kuttner and Moore, in which the apparently adult ET with whom the protagonist falls in love is in fact a superchild: A child can't completely comprehend an adult. But a child can more or less understand another child--which is reduced to the same equation as his own, or at least the same common denominator. A superman would have to grow. He wouldn't start out mature... Similarly, Ted Sturgeon's story "The [Widget], the [Wadget], and Boff97" has ETs on the verge of destroying the human race until they have fun with a child, and understand us at last: Throughout the continuum as we know it (and a good deal more as we don't know it) there are cultures that fly and cultures that swim; there are boron folk and fluorine fellowships, cupro-copraphages and (roughly speaking) immaterial lifeforms which swim and swirl around each other in space like so many pelagic shards of metaphysics. And some organize into super- entities like a beehive or a slime-mold so that they live plurally to become singular, and some have even more singular ideas of plurality.... Prognosis [for Earth] Positive. Their young are delightful.
  7. "Shadows in the Sun", by Chad Oliver (1954) (New York: Ballentine) Small town in Texas is covert base of super-society of interstellar origin; man who finds out must prepare humanity for galactic UN membership; uses author's expertise as Anthropologist
  8. "A Mirror for Observers", by Edgar Pangborn (1954) (Garden City NY: Doubleday) Martians covertly on Earth plant the seeds of moral enlightenment; philosophical examination of what it means for a man to be "good"; I see this as a science fictional equivalent of C. S. Lewis' theological fantasy "The Screwtape Letters." Winner of 1954 International Fantasy Award.
  9. "The Black Cloud", by Fred Hoyle (London: Heinemann, 1957; New York: Harper, 1957) A particularly important novel that almost makes it into this subgenre (the alien comes between Sun and Earth, not strickly to Earth) is "The Black Cloud", by prominent Astronomer-Author Sir Fred Hoyle. He explores the communications problems between humans and a very intelligent and powerful, but very alien, creature made up of organic life distributed on particles within an ultra-cold "molecular cloud" in space. This novel also lays out (for the 1950s) a good summary of the kind of logistics needed to assemble and support a Science Team.
  10. "The Wanderer", by Fritz Leiber (New York: Ballantine, 1964) "The Wanderer" by Fritz Leiber is also a detailed and thoughtful examination of First Contact, in which a planet-sized UFO (The Wanderer) pulverizes our Moon for fuel and raises deadly tides on Earth. "Then a voice, strangely sweet and cajoling, called to him [astronaut Don Merriam] in only slightly slurred English: 'Come! Unsuit yourself and come down!'" [p.138]. The felinoid ET Tigerishka is offended that humans keep cats as pets, and on meeting her, Merriam ponders "It was unreasonable to think of an alien being being able to speak English without any preliminary parleying. Or was it?" [p.143]. It turns out that these ETs are telepathic, and disdain humans: "Monkeys! Cowardly, chattering, swarming -- no individuality, no flair!... We think he smells. Makes smells with his mind, too" [p.170]. They have a fabulous technology, though: "I come superior galactic culture. Read minds, throw thoughts, sail hyperspace, live forever if want, blow up suns, all that sort stuff. Look like animal -- resume ancestral shapes. Make brain small but really large (psychophysiosubmicrominiaturization)! We stay superior. You not believe?" [pp.192-3]. The story then gives an explanation for why we haven't seen ETs before, despite their being prevalent: "Because mankind is young, you think the universe is, too. But it is old, old, old.... You think that space is empty, but it's full. Your own solar system is one of the few primeval spots left, like a small, weed-grown lot overlooked by builders in the heart of a vast but ancient city that has overgrown all the countryside.... There is the drama of meeting other life forms -- shocks, moments of poignent wonder.... The universe is full.... Intelligent life is everywhere, its planets darkening the stars" [pp.255-256].
  11. "Nightwings", by Robert Silverberg (1969)
  12. "Contact", by Carl Sagan (1985)[Contact, Carl Sagan, New York: Simon and Schuster, 1985; grown out of a film treatment by Carl Sagan & Ann Druyan, assisted by Gentry Lee & Lynda Obst] "Contact" by Carl Sagan was a remarkable first novel by the well-known scientist and author. It tells of signals being received from near the star Vega, consisting initially of "the first few hundred prime numbers in order," consistent with our "Rosetta Stone" theory of mathematics in common. The aliens also send a copy of the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games TV broadcast, and an enormous encrypted "Message" which turns out to be blueprints and assembly instructions for a space-warp spaceship to carry a five-human crew to the center of the galaxy, so that superior aliens can gather our "feelings, memories, instincts, learned behaviors, insights, madness, dreams, love" for a sort of "Office of the Galactic Census."
For an entire book on how to communicate with extraterrestrials, click on: How to Talk to an Extraterrestrial

Weinbaum's "Martian Odyssey"

The first time this idea was explored in science fiction was in 1934, when chemical engineer Stanley Weinbaum's story "A Martian Odyssey" ["A Martian Odyssey," Stanley G. Weinbaum, Wonder Stories, July 1934] introduced a fascinatingly different alien named Tweel, who, for the first time in literature, was as smart as a human but did not think remotely like a human. This birdlike Martian, who jumped into the air and landed on his beak as a mode of travel, was able to learn the human protagonist's name, and the human learn his name, but then their communications bogged down in mutual incomprehension: "I couldn't get the hang of his talk. Either I missed some subtle point or we just didn't think alike--and I rather believe the latter view." Weinbaum then solved the problem in a way that forms the basis of our Handbook: "After a while I gave up the language business, and tried mathematics. I scratched two plus two equals four on the ground, and demonstrated it with pebbles. Again Tweel caught the idea, and informed me that three plus three equals six." This first step -- communicating about elementary arithmetic, and then working up to more and more advanced mathematics -- is the recommended technique, as many scientists today agree. 2001: A Space Odyssey, Arthur C. Clarke, New York: New American Library, 1968; Stanley Kubrick's 1968 MGM film

Leinster's "First Contact"

Another classic story of human-ET communications, indeed the one that gave the name to this whole genre of fiction, was "First Contact" by Murray Leinster in 1945 ["First Contact," Murray Leinster (pseudonym of W.F. Jenkins), Astounding Science Fiction, May 1945]. A human-crewed spaceship and an alien-crewed spaceship encounter each other thousands of light years away, in the Crab Nebula. They communicate by radio, again beginning with mathematics, and accumulate a vocabulary of words that they can both agree upon. They find that they, broadly speaking, think in the same way. Unfortunately, that means that they both realize that if either of them returned to their home planet, the other might follow and begin an interstellar war. "I'd like to say," said the skipper heavily, "the appropriate things about this first contact of two dissimilar civilized races, and of my hopes that a friendly intercourse between the two peoples will result." Tommy Dort, the radio operator, sends this message, and receives a response from the ET captain: "He says, sir, 'That is all very well, but is there any way for us to let each other go home alive? I would be happy to hear of such a way if you can contrive one. At the moment it seems to me that one of us must be killed.'" Rather than destroy each other on the spot, they have a clever idea: "Swap ships!.... We can fix our instruments so they'll do no trailing, and he can do the same with his. We'll each remove our star maps and records. We'll each dismantle our weapons. The air will serve, and we'll take their ship and they'll take ours, and neither one can harm or trail the other, and each will carry home more information than can be taken otherwise." They communicate so well that, by the end of the story, they are telling each other dirty jokes!

Piper's "Omnilingual"

Further confirmation of our basic strategy was intelligently presented in the story "Omnilingual" by H. Beam Piper in 1957. ["Omnilingual", H. Beam Piper, Astounding Science Fiction, February 1957]. Human archeologists on an alien planet try to understand a vanished civilization. They succeed, based on the discovery of an alien "Rosetta Stone" which permits translation of the alien language. The key to recognition of shared knowledge is the Periodic Table of the Elements. Both humans and ETs have found the same inevitable pattern of the elements Hydrogen, Helium, Lithium, Beryllium, Boron, Carbon, Nitrogen, Oxygen, and so forth. From that pattern, on the "Rosetta Stone," the alien arithmetic and technology become quickly able to be decoded.

Katherine MacLean's "Pictures Don't Lie"

["Pictures Don't Lie," Katherine MacLean, Galaxy Science Fiction, August 1951; reprinted in The Diploids, New York: Avon, 1962] other fiction on the subject: Dec 1934 Raymond Z. Gallun's "Old Faithful" in "Astounding", a famous story of a Martian astronomer who travels to Earth, a fatal trip but one that fulfills him with the joy of finally being able to study humans close up.

Delany's "Babel-17"

"Babel-17" by Samuel R. Delany [New York: Ace, 1968] is another novel which about communication with extraterrestrials. This complex study of alien language is strongly based on Delany's careful study of Semiotic and linguistic theory.

Vance's "Languages of Pao" and the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis

Another essential idea is fictionally explored in "The Language of Pao" by Jack Vance [The Language of Pao, Jack Vance, Satellite Science Fiction, December 1957].

Lem's "Solaris"

"Solaris" by Polish author Stanislaw Lem [Solaris, Stanislaw Lem, 1961; translation London: Faber, 1970] was made into an outstanding film [Solaris, directed by Andrei Tarkovsky, xxxx, yyyy] which some critics praised and others found impossible to understand. An entire ocean planet seems to be a single alien lifeform, with intelligence and power so far beyond the human level that our scientists are absolutely incapable of comprehending it. "We think of ourselves as the Knights of the Holy Contact," says the scientist character Snow. Eventually, after a century of study is reviewed, the character Giese concludes "no semantic system is as yet available to illustrate the behavior of the ocean."

Pohl's JEM

Frederik Pohl, a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, wrote expertly about communication with ETs in his novel JEM. ["JEM", Frederik Pohl, New York: Simon & Schuster, 1978; New York Baen, 1994].

Moffitt's "Jupiter Theft"

In Donald Moffitt's fine novel "The Jupiter Theft" [The Jupiter Theft, Donald Moffitt, New York: Del Rey, 1977 we have a closer examination of the notion that ET language may be musical in nature.

Clement's "Mission of Gravity"

"Mission of Gravity" [Mission of Gravity, Hal Clement, Garden City NJ: Doubleday, 1954] has one of the most vividly rendered alien planets with ETs ever written.

White's "All Judgment Fled"

The book "All Judgment Fled", by James White, [All Judgment Fled, James White, New York: Walker, 1969] is a novel of first contact by human astronauts who board an extraterrestrial spaceship which has entered the solar system, and is in orbit near Jupiter.

Farmer's "Mother"

Philip JosЋ Farmer's famous short story "Mother" ["Mother", Philip JosЋ Farmer, Thrilling Wonder Stories, April 1953, reprinted in Strange Relations, Philip JosЋ Farmer, New York: Avon, 1974] has a notoriously Oedipal relationship between human and alien.

Oliver's "Unearthly Neighbors"

Chad Oliver, an Anthropologist, wrote particularly plausible novels of First Contact -- a term, after all, which originated in the field of Anthropology. The first of his masterpieces. "Unearthly Neighbors" ["Unearthly Neighbors", Chad Oliver, New York: Ballentine, 1960; revised (first hardcover) edition, New York: Crown, 1984] in 1960 later had a sequel, "The Shores of Another Sea." {to be done} RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS page

ALTERNATE WORLDS:

history might have happened differently The "Alternate History" or "Allohistory" novels are those in which some one moment in time produced an event different from what we know in our history, and things went off in a different track ever since. Other terms for this popular genre include: "counterfactuals", "uchronias", and "what-ifs." Benjamin Disraeli's "The Wondrous Tale of Alroy, and the Rise of Iskander" [1833] is about a Jew who founds a global empire in 12th Century Baghdad, after which history takes on a different flavor. This novelist/Prime Minister can be assumed to have had a profound understanding of History and how it might have been different... since he was, of course, himself Jewish. Edmund Lawrence may have invented the modern form of this genre in 1899 with his novel "It May Happen Yet", where Napoleon invaded Great Britain. Others cite Castello Holford's novel "Aristopia: A Romance-History of the New World" (1895) or the French Louis-Napoleon Geoffroy-Chateu's "Napoleon et la conquete du monde: 1812-1823, Histoire de la Monarchie Universelle." In 1907, the historian/essayist G. M. Trevelyan published a nominally nonfictional article about what might have happened if Napoleon had won at Waterloo. Had he read Edmund Lawrence's 1899 novel "It May Happen Yet"? Alfred Toynbee, in his "A Study of History" tried the same sort of academic experiments in allohistory. One of the most common sub-subgenres involve World War II having been won by the Axis (as in Philip K. Dick's 1962 masterpiece "The Man in the High Castle") or the American Civil War having been won by the South ("Guns of the South") by Harry Turtledove. Some other splendid examples are:
  1. "P.'s Correspondance", by Nathaniel Hawthorne (1845), the earliest such short story?
  2. "Of a History of Events Which Have Not Happened", by Isaac Disraeli (1849)
  3. "The Blind Spot" by Homer Eon Flint and A. Hall [originally serialized in Argosy All-Story Weekly, starting 14 May 1921; New York: Ace, 1964??] "The most famous fantastic novel of all time. Fabulous!" -- Forrest J. Ackerman Ace blurb: "The Blind Spot is surely the great classic novel of parallel worlds. It is one of the most enthralling science-fiction books ever written. At once a fantasy adventure, an exceptional mystery, it is a new concept that touches the very framework of reality. What was 'The Blind Spot?' A room in San Francisco where strange things happened -- or a doorway into another cosmos, a different world, or perhaps the key to past or future? The fantastic events that follow from its deceptively simple opening are the sort of stuff from which Charles Fort wove his world-shaking books and A. Merritt wrought fabulous novels. 'The Blind Spot' is an experience in science-fiction imagination not to be missed."
  4. "If It Had Happened Otherwise: Lapses into Imaginary History", edited by J. C. Squires, London: Longmans Green (1931)which included
  5. "If Lee Had Not Won the Battle of Gettysburg", by Winston Churchill (1931), short story
  6. "If Booth Had Missed: A Drama of the Reconstruction Period", by Arthur Goodman (1932),
  7. "Ancestral Voices", by Nat Schachner (1933), flawed time-travel change-the-past story, in which the accidental consequence is the passage into never-beingness of tens of thousands of descendants of one killed ancestor
  8. "Sideways in Time", by Murray Leinster (1934), gives a four-dimensional view of alternate timelines, and a protagonist who switches from one to another, some in which humans never evolved. The breakthrough into explicitly science-fictional allohistory.
  9. "The Curfew Tolls", by Stephen Vincent Benet (1935)
  10. "If the South Had Won the War", by Virginia Dabney (1936)
  11. "Victoire a Waterloo", by Robert Aron (1937)
  12. "Lest Darkness Fall", by L. Sprague de Camp, in "Unknown" (1939), 6th Century time traveler tries to forestall the Dark Ages
  13. "The Wheels of If", by L. Sprague de Camp, in "Unknown" (1940), 10th Century Norsemen colonize America
  14. "Horsesense Hank in the Parallel Worlds" by Nelson S. Bond [Amazing, Aug 1942]
  15. "Police Operation" by H. Beam Piper, in "Astounding" (July 1948), starting a series of stories about an infinity of alternate time-lines in "paratime"
  16. "The Sound of His Horn", by "Sarban" (1952), Germany wins WW II
  17. "Bring the Jubilee", by Ward Moore (1953), South beats North in America
  18. "The Man in the High Castle" by Philip K. Dick (1962), Germany and Japan conquer and split the U.S.
  19. "Pavane", by Keith Roberts (1966), Spanish Armada beats England, Queen Elizabeth assassinated
  20. "Moon of Ice", by Brad Linaweaver (1968), Nazis won WWII
  21. "The Alteration", by Kingsley Amis (1976), Spanish Armada beats England, no Reformation
  22. "The Anubis Gates", by Tim Powers (1983), Victorian London a nexus of evil
  23. "West of Eden", by Harry Harrison (1984), Dinosaurs survived, two sequels
  24. "A Different Flesh", by Harry Turtledove (1988), non-extinct non-homo-sapiens hominids
  25. "The Difference Engine", by William Gibson & Bruce Sterling (1990), Charles Babbage completed computer, English Empire automated
  26. "A Troubling Along the Border", by Donald Aamodt [AvoNova, Dec 1991] sword & sorcery humor, sequel to "A Name to Conjure With" [Avon, Aug 1989],
  27. "Fatherland", by Robert Harris (1992), Nazis won WWII
  28. "Pasquale's Angel", by Paul McAuley (1994), da Vinci sparks Industrial Revolution
  29. "Pathways to Otherwhere", by James P. Hogan (1997): introduction and hotlinks to novel chapters
  30. "The Dog King", by Christoph Ransmayr (1997), America thoroughly deindustrializes Germany after WWII, war in Japan ends in 1965 reviewed in the New York Times Book Review, 22 June 1997, by Gabriele Annan
Perhaps the first website you should look at, specializing in this genre: Jim Rittenhouse's Alternate History and a fascinating inside look by a professional science fiction author: Stephen Baxter's "Branches in Time: Alternate Histories Are True SF" Fairly thorough search results, including anthologies, references, and listings by author may be found in: The 'Net Alternate History List by Robert B. Schmunk also check out: Chris Blakely's Alternate Histories and Chris Palmer's Alternate Histories and Dan Goodman's Alternate Histories and David Johnson's Alternate Histories @ Geocities Evelyn C. Leeper's Alternate Histories @ Geocities and Eric Dunkleberger's Alternate Histories {to be done} A definition that seems to take allohistory into account is: "A handy short definition of almost all science fiction might read: realistic speculation about possible future events, based solidly on adequate knowledge of the real world, past and present, and on a thorough understanding of the scientific method. To make the definition cover all science fiction (instead of 'almost all') it is necessary only to strike out the word 'future'." -- Robert Heinlein, in "The SF Book of Lists", p.257, ed. Malcolm Edwards & Maxim Jakubowski, New York: Berkeley (1982) There is a scientific basis for such speculations, namely the "Many Worlds" interpretation of Quantum Mechanics. The notion is that each time a subatomic particle can one of several things, it actually does all them, splitting the universe into multiple copies which differ only in that one micro-event. The universe splits, splits again, and ramifies into an astonishing tree of alternative realities, a quintillion times a second. This theory was developed by Hugh Everett in 1957, but he had philosophical predecessors. Giordano Bruno was burnt at the stake (1600 A.D.) for suggesting that there were an infinite number of worlds in the universe, and that any possible world must thus exist. What really got him in trouble was his specific example that there must be a world identical to ours, except that the Mass was spoken in the vernacular instead of in Latin. Small differences can be a matter of life or death. Rudjer Josip Boscovich [1711-1787] gave a qualitative description of alternate universe theory in "Theoria Philsophiae Naturalis" [1758]. See "New Scientist", 24 May 1997, p.53 for a letter to the editor summarizing Boscovich's idea. Each possible universe is a single point in a much larger (infinite?) superubiverse, which is itself a single point in an an even larger super-super-universe... There is some evidence (see the Doug Jones and James Hogan sites hotlinked below) that a majority of informed physicists actually believe the Hugh Everett "Many Worlds" interpretation of Quantum Mechanics, but won't tell the public because it just sounds too weird. Well, we Science Fiction folks can handle the idea! For more on the Many-Worlds interpretation of Quantum Mechanics, particularly as it related to consciousness, extraterrestrials, philosphy, and immortality, see: Are We Alone? Doug Jones' fascinating and unique metaphysical inquiry, presented as a socratic dialogue between himself and an on-line alien, with hotlinks (and which is the source of the hotlinks listed below) Many Worlds FAQ Many-Worlds interpretation of Quantum Mechanics by Doug Jones Quantum Indeterminacy: is it possible that Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle is due to uncertainty as to which alternate universe we're in? Quantum Future Physics Omega Point Theory: comments on Frank Tipler's theory that everyone who ever lived will be resurrected at the end of the universe, according to Physics Stapp's Quantum Theory of Consciousness, Part 2 Ontology: summary, references, and hotlinks relating to Ontology, the Philosphy of the nature of Being, similar to Metaphysics, i.e. the Theory of The Multiverse as a whole, whether Realist or Nominalist in nature Metascience, or Science and Spirituality Metatechnology James P. Hogan's "Pathways to Otherwhere": introduction and hotlinks to novel chapters Alternate View Column #16: by Prof. John Cramer? Alcor's Page on Many-Worlds, Immortality, and Cryonics RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS page

ANTIGRAVITY:

what goes up may not come down

"We may learn to deprive large masses of their gravity, and give them absolute levity, for the sake of easy transport." -- Benjamin Franklin, letter to Joseph Priestley, 8 February 1780

Cyrano de Bergerac, in "A Voyage to the Moon" (1650) had the protagonist devise several ways to reach Luna. One involved building an iron vehicle, then throwing a lodestone (natural magnet) into the air, which pulls the vehicle upwards, at which point the adventurer throws the lodestone higher, and thereby hoists himself up by his own bootstraps. This was adapted by Jonathan Swift for his floating Island of Laputa, in "Gulliver's Travels." In 1827, the novel "A Voyage to the Moone" was published in New York by George Tucker, under the pseudonym "Joseph Atterly." The spaceship is coated with an antigravity chemical, similar to the "Cavorite" used by H. G. Wells in "The First Men in the Moon" (1901), almost three-quarters of a century later. John Ames Mitchell's "Drowsy" (1917) is one of several novels which link antigravity to the discovery of an ultimate source of energy. The field has developed considerably, since Albert Einstein's General Theory of Relativity has changed our concept of gravity far beyond the Universal Law of Gravitation by Isaac Newton. All we need to build a working antigravity machine, according to Einstein's theory, is to make a hollow donut shape with a cross-section about the size of a football field, and fill it with a few trillion tons of neutronium circulating at a good fraction of the speed of light. The "frame dragging" effect of General Relativity would reduce gravity in the donut's hole to zero, or a little bit less... We have built actual Gravity Wave detectors, perhaps the first of which was constructed by Dr. Robert Forward, now a full-time science fiction author. We believe that gravity has caused the existence of "Black Holes", which I tend to lump into this category. According to Sam Moskowitz, in "Fantasy Commentator", Vol.VIII, No.4, Fall 1995, p.281, "Willy Ley had an article in the third (1939) issue of the British professional magazine Fantasy titled "Impossibilities.' Among those he included anti-gravity devices. As a follow-up to this, The Satellite for February 1940 carried an article by George Medhurst loquaciously titled 'The Life Story, Together with Some Account of the Reputed Death, of the Anti-Gravitational Screen." This reviewed devices authors had employed to defeat gravity, starting with Francis Godwin's 'The Man in the Moone' (1638) and citing worls by Cyrano de Bergerac (1657), Joseph Atterly (1827), Achille Eyraud (1864), Chrystotum Trueman (1864) and modern authors. For that time in fan history, it was an impressive effort." Some antigravity theories (in science and fiction) relate to FASTER THAN LIGHT. There have been some recent reports of purported antigravity in the laboratory, including... Antigravity hotlinks Antigravity Research Website Antigravity, Contragravity: Mainstream and Fringe Websites {to be done} RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS page

BAMBI'S CHILDREN:

animals who speak, think, or act human [Revised: 4 July 1998] Felix Salten actually used this title for the sequel to his better-known "Bambi." This is (as Baird Searles, Beth Meacham, and Michael Franklin point out ["A Reader's Guide to Fantasy", New York: Avon, 1982] a fine description of tales in which animals speak, think, or act human. Hugh Lofting's "Dr. Dolittle" stories are so captivatingly charming and yet realistic that they make us forget that talking animals are Fantasy. Some such tales are designed to show how humans fit into a world that contains many more species of beings, all deserving our compassion. Other stories are designed to make people look bad by comparison. Still others scarcely have people in the background, and are self-contained stories from the point of view of creatures with somewhat different perceptions and social structures. Aesop's Fables are based directly or indirectly on Greek tradition. It is said that Soctrates, on "death row" in 399 B.C. whiled away his time turning Aesop stories into verse. Herodotus records that Aesop was a slave who lived around 550 B.C., probably not Greek, possibly from Sardis (in asia). The moralized beast tale associated with Aesop is common worldwide, surely not his invention, typical of 7th century B.C. Greek poetry and the oldest parts of the Old Testament. Still, we are stuck with his name when we discuss "Bambi's Children." Similarly, Jean de La Fontaine's "Fables in Verse" (1668) comes to mind through classics such as "The Grasshopper and the Ant" or "The Fox and the Cheese." His Fables were turned, by demanding readers and moneyed publishers, into a trilogy, with volume II in 1679 and Volume III in 1693. Few today recall his prose works ("Contes") of the genre of Boccacchio and Marguerite de Navarre, yet they were the works he cared for most. There are many novels and stories about intelligent animals, either as straight fantasy, or (if science fiction), often resulting from genetic engineering: Apes Pierre Boulle's novel Monkey Planet, later adapted into the "Planet of the Apes" films Richard Cowper's novel Clone Peter van Greenaway's novel Manrissa Man James Fenimore Cooper's 1835 novel: "The Monikins" (monkey society near the North Pole) Birds Dick King-Smith, pseudonym of Ronald Gordon King-Smith (1922- ): novel Godhanger [Doubleday UK, Sep 1996] ISBN 0-385-40778-5, Ј9.99, 172pp, hardcover, Young Adult Animal Fantasy/Bird [Corgi, Oct 1997] ISBN 0-552-54501-5, Ј3.99, 172pp, paperback Bears Richard Adams' novel Shardik (Macmillan, 1975; Avon) Cats Fritz Leiber's story "Space-Time for Springers", and his novel The Wanderer Cordwainer Smith's story "The Ballad of Lost C'Mell", part of his "Instrumentality of Man" series in which various animals have been raised to human intelligence, and fight for civil rights millennia from now. Gabriel King's The Wild Road [Century, Nov 1997] ISBN 0-7126-7870-0, Ј16.99, hardcover [Arrow, Nov 1997] ISBN 0-09-924252-4, Ј5.99, 463pp, paperback kitten must rescue the Queen and King of Cats Robert Lawson's (1892-1957) Captain Kidd's Cat [1956] cat sidekick of pirate captain Dogs Harlan Ellison's novel A Boy and His Dog, later adapted into a very fine and faithful film Clifford Simak's novel City Olaf Stapledon's novel Sirius, as mentioned in the thumbnail description of "Man's Best Friend") Dolphins or Whales Arthur C. Clarke's novel Dolphin Island Robert Merle's novel Day of the Dolphins Roy Meyers' novel Dolphin Boy (and sequels) Joe Poyer's novel Operation Malacca Robert Silverberg's story "Ishmael in Love" Leo Szilard's story "The Voice of the Dolphins", in his story collection of the same name (one of the few science fiction story collections by a Nobel laureate scientist) AIan Watson's novel The Jonah Kit Roger Zelazny's story "Kjwalll'kje'k'koothailll'kej'k" (no, that's not a typo) Hares Gary Kilworth's novel Frost Dancers [HarperCollins UK, Aug 1992] ISBN 0-246-13915-3, Ј14.99, 381pp, hardcover [HarperCollins UK, Nov 1993] ISBN 0-586-21463-1, Ј4.99, 381pp, paperback see "Rabbits", below Foxes Gary Kilworth's novel The Foxes of First Dark [Unwin Hyman, 1989, as "Hunter's Moon"; [Doubleday, May 1990] ISBN 0-385-26427-5, .95, 371pp, hardcover Mice Douglas Adam's novel The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy reveals that Mice have been secretly running our planet for a long time... Gary Kilworth's novel House of Tribes [Bantam UK, Nov 1995] ISBN 0-593-03376-0, Ј12.99, 430pp, hardcover [Corgi, Sep 1996] ISBN 0-552-14111-9, Ј5.99, 430pp, paperback Robert Lawson's (1892-1957): Ben and Me [1939] mouse sidekick of Benjamin Franklin filmed animation [Disney, 1953] I Discover Columbus [1941] mouse sidekick of Columbus Mr. Revere and I [1953] mouse sidekick of Paul Revere Moles Robert Lawson's (1892-1957): Mr. Twigg's Mistake (Boston: Little Brown, 1947) is a sort of rewrite of H.G. Wells' "Food of the Gods" about a mole the size of a Bear Newts Karel Capek's novel War With the Newts, not in any way related to Newt Gingrich, has these amphibians used as slaves, until they overhtrow their masters and begin reshaping the planet to their desires. Capek introduced the word "robot" into literature in his play "R.U.R.", which is closer to cloning than to metal robots in subject matter. Pigs Charlotte's Web Dick King-Smith, pseudonym of Ronald Gordon King-Smith (1922- ): "Babe" books: The Sheep-Pig [Gollancz, 1983] Young Adult Animal Fantasy/Pig adapted to the film "Babe" {hotlink to be done} Ace [Gollancz, 1990] sequel to "The Sheep-Pig" The Sheep-Pig and Ace [Puffin, Oct 1996] ISBN 0-14-038503-7, Ј4.99, 242pp, trade paperback, Young Adult Animal Fantasy omnibus edition of "The Sheep-Pig" and its sequel Rabbits Richard Adams' novel Watership Down [Macmillan, 1974; Avon] Robert Lawson (1892-1957): Fantasy illustrator/author the "Rabbit Hill" series about talking rabbits Rabbit Hill [1944] Robbut, a Tale of Tales [1948] Edward, Hoppy, and Joe [1952] The Tough Winter [1954] see "Hares", above Rats A. Bertram Chandler's novel Giant Killer, about smart rats infesting a spaceship. The author told me that he wrote this abord a ship in Sydney Harbor, Australia, which was infested with ordinary rats. Skunks Clifford Simak's story "Operation Stinky" Spiders Charlotte's Web Weasels Gary Kilworth's novel The Welkin Weasels: Thunder Oak [Corgi, July 1997] ISBN 0-552-54546-5, Ј4.99, 382pp, paperback Wolves Gary Kilworth's novel Midnight's Sun [Unwin Hyman, Sep 1990] ISBN 0-04-440683-5, Ј12.95, 317pp, hardcover [Grafton, Mar 1992] ISBN 0-586-21495-X, Ј4.99, 317pp, paperback RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS page

BEAM ME UP:

matter transmission, techno-teleportation If you do it be mental means, it's called "teleportation", if it's done by science and engineering, it's called "matter transmission." Star Trek's "Beam Me Up, Scottie" is far from the first use of this device in science fiction. Earlier examples include:
  1. Poul Anderson's "The Enemy Stars" (Lippincott, 1959)
  2. John Brunner's "Web of Everywhere" (Bantam, 1974)
  3. Algis Budrys' "Rogue Moon" (Fawcett Gold Medal, 1960): the protagonist with a death wish is again and again transmitted to the Moon to explore a deadly alien maze
  4. Thomas M. Disch's "Echo Round His Bones" (Berkley, 1967): but after you are transmitted, a ghost of you is left behind
  5. Joe Haldeman's "Mindbridge" (St.Martins, 1976)
  6. Harry Harrison's "One Step from Earth" (Macmillan, 1970)
  7. Fred T. Jane's "To Venus in Five Seconds" (1897 !)
  8. Larry Niven's "Flash Crowd" (19zz) and later stories
  9. Bob Shaw's "Who Goes Here?" (19zz)
  10. Clifford Simak's "Way Station" (Doubleday, 1963)
  11. Roger Zelazny's "Today We Choose Faces" (Signet, 1973)
The earliest of all, according to Sam Moskowitz, was "The Man Without a Body" by Edward Page Mitchell [New York Sun, 25 March 1877]. Sam Moskowitz calls this "the first fictional exposition yet discovered of breaking matter down into energy scientifically and transmitting it to a receiver where it may be reformed." The adverb "scientifically" is used by Moskowitz, one presumes, to eliminate the earlier but more fantasy-oriented "Helionde" by Sidney Whiting (1855) where the protagonist dreams that he is dissolved into vapor and transmitted to an inhabited Sun.

Quantum Teleportation by Dafydd ab Hugh (c) 1997 by DaH & Associates

Teleportation is the name given by science fiction writers to the feat of making an object or person disintegrate in one place while a perfect replica appears somewhere else. How this is accomplished is usually not explained in detail, but the general idea seems to be that the original object is scanned in such a way as to extract all the information from it, then this information is transmitted to the receiving location and used to construct the replica, not necessarily from the actual material of the original, but perhaps from atoms of the same kinds, arranged in exactly the same pattern as the original. A teleportation machine would be like a fax machine, except that it would work on 3-dimensional objects as well as documents, it would produce an exact copy rather than an approximate facsimile, and it would destroy the original in the process of scanning it. A few science fiction writers consider teleporters that preserve the original, and the plot gets complicated when the original and teleported versions of the same person meet; but the more common kind of teleporter destroys the original, functioning as a super transportation device, not as a perfect replicator of souls and bodies. Two years ago an international group of six scientists, including IBM Fellow Charles H. Bennett, confirmed the intuitions of the majority of science fiction writers by showing that perfect teleportation is indeed possible in principle, but only if the original is destroyed. Meanwhile, other scientists are planning experiments to demonstrate teleportation in microscopic objects, such as single atoms or photons, in the next few years. But science fiction fans will be disappointed to learn that no one expects to be able to teleport people or other macroscopic objects in the foreseeable future, for a variety of engineering reasons, even though it would not violate any fundamental law to do so. Until recently, teleportation was not taken seriously by scientists, because it was thought to violate the uncertainty principle of quantum mechanics, which forbids any measuring or scanning process from extracting all the information in an atom or other object. According to the uncertainty principle, the more accurately an object is scanned, the more it is disturbed by the scanning process, until one reaches a point where the object's original state has been completely disrupted, still without having extracted enough information to make a perfect replica. This sounds like a solid argument against teleportation: if one cannot extract enough information from an object to make a perfect copy, it would seem that a perfect copy cannot be made. But the six scientists found a way to make an end-run around this logic, using a celebrated and paradoxical feature of quantum mechanics known as the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen effect. In brief, they found a way to scan out part of the information from an object A, which one wishes to teleport, while causing the remaining, unscanned, part of the information to pass, via the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen effect, into another object C which has never been in contact with A. Later, by applying to C a treatment depending on the scanned-out information, it is possible to maneuver C into exactly the same state as A was in before it was scanned. A itself is no longer in that state, having been thoroughly disrupted by the scanning, so what has been achieved is teleportation, not replication. The unscanned part of the information is conveyed from A to C by an intermediary object B, which interacts first with C and then with A. What? Can it really be correct to say "first with C and then with A"? Surely, in order to convey something from A to C, the delivery vehicle must visit A before C, not the other way around. But there is a subtle, unscannable kind of information that, unlike any material cargo, and even unlike ordinary information, can indeed be delivered in such a backward fashion. This subtle kind of information, also called "Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen (EPR) correlation" or "entanglement", has been at least partly understood since the 1930s when it was discussed in a famous paper by Albert Einstein, Boris Podolsky, and Nathan Rosen. In the 1960s John Bell showed that a pair of entangled particles, which were once in contact but later move too far apart to interact directly, can exhibit individually random behavior that is too strongly correlated to be explained by classical statistics. Experiments on photons and other particles have repeatedly confirmed these correlations, thereby providing strong evidence for the validity of quantum mechanics, which neatly explains them. Another well-known fact about EPR correlations is that they cannot by themselves deliver a meaningful and controllable message. It was thought that their only usefulness was in proving the validity of quantum mechanics. But now it is known that, through the phenomenon of quantum teleportation, they can deliver exactly that part of the information in an object which is too delicate to be scanned out and delivered by conventional methods. Compare conventional facsimile transmission with quantum teleportation. In conventional facsimile transmission the original is scanned, extracting partial information about it, but remains more or less intact after the scanning process. The scanned information is sent to the receiving station, where it is imprinted on some raw material (e.g. paper) to produce an approximate copy of the original. In quantum teleportation two objects B and C are first brought into contact and then separated. Object B is taken to the sending station, while object C is taken to the receiving station. At the sending station object B is scanned together with the original object A which one wishes to teleport, yielding some information and totally disrupting the state of A and B. The scanned information is sent to the receiving station, where it is used to select one of several treatments to be applied to object C, thereby putting C into an exact replica of the former state of A. To learn more about quantum teleportation, see the following articles: C.H. Bennett, G. Brassard, C. Crepeau, R. Jozsa, A. Peres, and W. Wootters, "Teleporting an Unknown Quantum State via Dual Classical and EPR Channels", Phys. Rev. Lett. vol. 70, pp 1895-1899 (1993) (the original 6-author research article) Tony Sudbury, "Instant Teleportation", Nature vol.362, pp 586-587 (1993) (a semipopular account). Ivars Peterson, Science News, April 10, 1993, p. 229. (another semipopular account). Samuel Braunstein, A fun talk on teleportation RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS page

BEYOND THE FIELDS WE KNOW:

magical world unconnected to ours "Beyond the Fields We Know" is a haunting phrase by Lord Dunsany. This is (as Baird Searles, Beth Meacham, and Michael Franklin point out ["A Reader's Guide to Fantasy", New York: Avon, 1982] a fine description of tales in which all the action happens in a magical world unconnected to our own by space or time. "The Lord of the Rings", by J. R. R. Tolkein, is a superb example. Tolkein said that the author of such fiction is engaged in "subcreation" of the other world, with an inner consistency and conviction: "To experience directly a Secondary World, the potion is too strong, and you give to it Primary Belief, however marvellous the events. You are deluded -- whether that is the intention of the elves (always or at any time) is another question. They at any rate are not deluded. This is for them a form of Art, and distinct from Wizardry or Magic, properly so called" [J. R. R. Tolkien, "On Fairy Stories", in "Tree and Leaf", 1964]. David Hartwell [Age of Wonders, New York: Walker, 1984, p.14] summarizes this genre as "Tolkienesque fantasy, in the manner of Lord of the Rings -- carefully constructed worlds as the setting for a heroic quest." Here we mean tales of a world sufficient unto itself, with its own history, geography, cultures, races, and nonhuman beings. There is a greater or lesser degree of magic, sometimes central to the action, sometimes part of the taken-for-granted background, but always as something distinguishing this world from our technological one. When we read such fiction, we feel ourselves drawn into the other world, and taking it as real, so that when we close the book, it is hard to wrench ourselves away from that world and reluctantly return to home. To capture the dream, we read the book again, or perhaps look for others that will produce the same magical emotion. Here are some places you might start your search. 93 Excellent "Beyond the Fields We Know" Books (alphabetically by last name of author):
  1. Lynn Abbey's "Daughter of the Bright Moon"
  2. Richard Adams' "Shardik"
  3. Joan Aiken's Alternate England series
  4. Lloyd Alexander's "The Cat Who Wanted to Be a Man"
  5. Lloyd Alexander's "The Chronicles of Prydain"
  6. Poul Anderson's "The Broken Sword"
  7. Piers Anthony's The Magic of Xanth series
  8. Piers Anthony's Proton/Phaze trilogy
  9. L. Frank Baum's The Oz Books
  10. Peter S. Beagle's "Come, Lady Death"
  11. Peter S. Beagle's "The Last Unicorn"
  12. John Bellairs' "The Face in the Frost"
  13. Terry Brooks' "The Sword of Shanara"
  14. John Brunner's "The Traveler in Black"
  15. James Branch Cabell's The Biography of Manuel of Poictesme series
  16. Lin Carter's The Thongor Series
  17. Lin Carter's The World's End Series
  18. Joy Chant's "The Grey Mane of Morning"
  19. B. J. Chute's "Greenwillow"
  20. Juanita Coulsen's "The Death God's Citadel"
  21. Juanita Coulsen's "The Web of Wizardry"
  22. Avram Davidson's "Island Under the Earth"
  23. Avram Davidson's "Peregrine: Primus"
  24. Avram Davidson's "The Phoenix and the Mirror"
  25. Avram Davidson's "Ursus of Ultima Thule"
  26. L. Sprague de Camp's "The Clocks of Iraz"
  27. L. Sprague de Camp's "The Goblin Tower"
  28. L. Sprague de Camp's "The Tritonian Ring"
  29. Samuel Delany's "Tales of Neveryon"
  30. Peter Dickenson's "The Blue Hawk"
  31. E. R. Eddison's "The Worm Ouroboros"
  32. Phyllis Eisenstein's "Born to Exile"
  33. Phyllis Eisenstein's "Sorcerer's Son"
  34. Gardner F. Fox's The Kothar Series
  35. Gardner F. Fox's The Kyrik Series
  36. Jane Gaskell's The Atlan saga
  37. Jane Gaskell's "King's Daughter"
  38. Roland Green's The Wandor Series
  39. Isidore Haiblum's "The Tsaddik of the Seven Wonders"
  40. Paul Hazel's The Finnbranch series
  41. Robert E. Howard and others' The Conan series
  42. Robert E. Howard's "King Kull"
  43. Dahlov Ipcar's "The Warlock of Night"
  44. Eric Iverson's "Wereblood"
  45. Eric Iverson's "Werenight"
  46. John Jakes' Brak the Barbarian series
  47. John Jakes' "Mention My Name in Atlantis"
  48. Tove Jansson's The Moomin books
  49. Diana Wynne Jones's "Charmed Life"
  50. Diana Wynne Jones's The Dalemark Sequence
  51. Diana Wynne Jones's "The Magicians of Caprona"
  52. Carol Kendall's "The Gammage Cup"
  53. Carol Kendall's "The Whisper of Glocken"
  54. Katherine Kurtz's Chronicles of Deryni
  55. Katherine Kurtz's The Legends of Camber of Culdi
  56. Henry Kuttner's "The Dark World"
  57. Tanith Lee's "Death's Master"
  58. Tanith Lee's "Night's Master"
  59. Ursula K. Le Guin's The Earthsea Trilogy
  60. Fritz Leiber's Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser series
  61. Astrid Lindgren's "Ronja Rvardotter" ["Ronja, the Robber's Daughter"] [1981]
  62. George MacDonald's "The Princess and the Curdie"
  63. George MacDonald's "The Princess and the Goblin"
  64. George MacDonald's "The Wise Woman"
  65. Patricia McKillip's "The Forgotten Beasts of Eld"
  66. Patricia McKillip's The Riddlemaster trilogy
  67. Hope Mirrlees's "Lud-in-the-Mist"
  68. Michael Moorcock's The Chronicles of Corum
  69. Michael Moorcock's The Elric series
  70. Michael Moorcock's "Gloriana"
  71. C. L. Moore's "The Black God's Shadow"
  72. William Morris' "The Water of the Wondrous Isles"
  73. William Morris' "The Well at the World's End"
  74. William Morris' "The Wood Beyond the World"
  75. Andre Norton's The Witch World series
  76. Andrew Offutt's Tiana's trilogy
  77. Alexei & Cory Panshin's "Earthmagic"
  78. Mervyn Peake's The Gormengast Trilogy
  79. Fletcher Pratt's "The Blue Star"
  80. Fletcher Pratt's "The Well of the Unicorn"
  81. Joanna Russ' The Alyx stories
  82. Nancy Springer's The Chronicles of Isle
  83. J.R.R. Tolkien's The Chronicles of Middle-Earth
  84. J.R.R. Tolkien's "Farmer Giles of Ham"
  85. J.R.R. Tolkien's "Leaf by Niggle"
  86. Karl Edward Wagner's The Kane Series
  87. Karl Edward Wagner's "Legion from the Shadows"
  88. Hugh Walker's The Magira series
  89. Oscar Wilde's "The Happy Prince and Other Stories"
  90. Roger Zelazny's "The Changing Land"
  91. Roger Zelazny's "Isle of the Dead"
  92. Roger Zelazny's "Jack of Shadows"
  93. xxx's "yyy"
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CITIES OF THE FUTURE:

bigger, better, and more astonishing urban visions

Then they fared on without ceasing till they drew near the city and behold, it was as if it were a piece of a mountain or a mass of iron cast in a mold and impenetrable for the height of its walls and bulwarks; while nothing could be more beautiful than its buildings and its ordinance -- The City of Brass (date unknown) translated by Sir Richard Burton

In Genesis we are told that the first city was built by Cain... Other cities in the Bible are not uniformy praised. Babylon, for example, is called "Babylon the Great, the mother of harlots and abominations of the earth" [Revelation 17:15]. One final biblical citation:

How doth the city sit solitary, that was full of people! how is she become a widow! she that was great among the nations, and princess among the provinces, how she has become tributary! -- Jeremiah 1:1 (605 B.C.)

Another company owned by the Webmaster of Magic Dragon Multimedia is Emerald City Publishing. The Emerald City is, of course, L. Frank Baum's "Oz", but also Seattle, Washington, where your humble webmaster founded the company in 1979. OZ is the prototype of the modern fantasy city -- but we want to take a closer look at the Science Fiction city right now. The French playwright Louis-Sebastien Mercier wrote "L'An 2440", later translated as "Memoirs of the Year Two Thousand Five Hundred" in 1771, about a utopian future Paris. Ever since, writers have been practicing urban renewal on a vast scale. Jonathan Swift's "Laputa" in "Gulliver's Travels" (1726) floated, as if by Antigravity, true, but it was first and foremost a future city, inhabited by scientists. The future city may be UTOPIA:, better in every way than what we have encountered in the present. It may be a Dystopia, carrying trends to a dark and terrifying horror. Or it may attempt to blend the two into a complex vision of an urban complexity that embraces good and bad alike in a distinct style and setting that makes us view our home in a new light. The case can be made that science fiction began in the 19th Century in France, with Jules Verne. Verne was born in Nantes, France, on 8 February 1828. He died in Amiens, France, on 24 March 1905. In between these dates, he was surely, as Isaac Asimov says, "the first writer to specialize in science fiction and to make a living at it, too." [Asimov on Science Fiction, p.158] Verne plumbed planetary depths -- "Journey to the Center of the Earth" (1864); fired people to the Moon from Florida -- "From the Earth to the Moon" (1865); and had a mad scientist conquer the oceans -- "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea" (1869). Verne had a mad scientist orbit the earth atmospherically in "Robur the Conqueror" and "Master of the World"; create a Utopia -- "The Mysterious Island"; explore conflicts between supercities -- "The Begum's Fortune"; and make cities fly -- "Propellor Island." 19 examples of Future Cities...
  1. "Propellor Island", by H. G. Wells (1895)
  2. "When the Sleeper Wakes", by H. G. Wells (1899)
  3. "Metropolis", by Thea von Harbou (1926): {film hotlink to be done}
  4. "The Caves of Steel", by Isaac Asimov (1954) (Garden City NY: Doubleday) Murder mystery starring human detective Elijah Baley and robot sidekick R. Daneel Olivaw, fascinatingly effective speculation on utopian sociology of automated future. The action is mostly in a future New York City. In Asimov's "Foundation" trilogy, the galactic capital is a planet entirely covered by a single city" "Trantor."
  5. "The City and the Stars", by Arthur C. Clarke (1956) (New York: Gnome Press, 1953) alienated immortal Alvin in billion-year-old city "Diaspar" seeks freedom, wisdom, and the stars (expanded to "The City and the Stars" in 1956)
  6. "Space Merchants", by Frederik Pohl & C. M. Kornbluth (Ballentine, 1953)New York City
  7. "Some Will Not Die", by Algis Budrys (as "False Night", Lion, 1954; Regency, 1961)New York City
  8. "Super City", by Richard Wilson, Science Fiction #33 (Feb 1959)
  9. "Dhalgren", by Samuel R. Delany (Bantam, 1975): the city is named "Bellona"
  10. "The Cities in Flight" trilogy, by James Blish (1955-1962): cities acquire antigravity by the "spindizzy", and lift off to interstellar space. The city we follow is New York.
  11. "Make Room! Make Room!", by Harry Harrison (Doubleday, 1966)New York City
  12. "The Year 2000", by Herman Kahn & A. J. Weiner (1968)nonfiction
  13. "Cities in Flight", by James Blish (1970)the "hero" is New York City
  14. "Vermillion Sands", by J. G. Ballard (Berkley, 1971): city named Vermillion Sands
  15. "The Pastel City", by M. John Harrison (Doubleday, 1972): city named Viriconium in this and the related novel "A Storm of Wings"
  16. "334", by Thomas M. Disch (Avon, 1974): New York City
  17. "Cinnabar", by Edward Bryant (Macmillan, 1976): city named Cinnabar
  18. "Oath of Fealty", by Larry Niven (19??): city named Todos Santos
  19. "The World Inside", by Robert Silverberg (1971): the city is named Urbmon 116
Some good short stories about future cities may be found in "Cities of Wonder", edited by Damon Knight (uncredited: published by Samuel H. Post), New York: Macfadden-Bartell, 1967:
  1. J. G. Ballard's "Billennium", originally in his collection of the same name (1952): the characters don't see the overcrowding from population as grimly as we readers do
  2. Stephen Vincent Benet's "By the Waters of Babylon", originally in "Selected Works of Stephen Vincent Benet" (1937): classic story of a great city after a great war
  3. James Blish's "Okie", originally in Astounding (1950)
  4. E. M. Forster's "The Machine Stops", originally in "The Eternal Moment and Other Stories", New York: Harcourt Brace & World (1928): classic tale of the entire future world subsumed into one great city, with people sealed away from birth in solitary cells, fed through tubes, distracted by TV, until they lose the ability to adapt to change, let alone disaster...
  5. Robert Heinlein's "It's Great to be Back!", originally in Saturday Evening Post (1947): great profile of Luna City, on the moon
  6. C. M. Kornbluth's "The Luckiest Man in Denv", originally in "The Marching Morons" New York: Ballentine (1959): conspiracy and conflict between future Denver and Los Angeles
  7. Henry Kuttner's "Jesting Pilot", originally in Astounding (1947): "The city screamed. It had been screaming for six hundred years..."
  8. Walter M. Miller's "Dumb Waiter", originally in Astounding (1952): how to reprogram the automated city after World War III?
  9. Don A. Stuart's [John Campbell, Jr.] "Forgetfulness", originally in Astounding Stories (1937): classic tale of the city millions of years from now, after the age of galactic travel, and what we do and do not remember about technology
Some science fiction stories with "City" in the title:
  1. "The City", by Sydney J. Bounds, novella, in Other Worlds (May 1951)
  2. "City at Random", by Philip E. High, in Nebula #19 (Dec 1956)
  3. "The City Calls", by Kenneth Bulmer, novella, in New Worlds #52 (Oct 1956)
  4. "A City Near Centaurus", by Bill Doede, in Galaxy (Oct 1962)
  5. "The City of Brass", by Robert F. Young, novelette, in Amazing (Aug 1965)
  6. "The City of Force", by Daniel F. Galouye, novelette, in Galaxy (Apr 1959)
  7. "The City of Ind", by Arthur J. Burks, in Spaceway (Dec 1954)
  8. "City of the Phoenix", by M. C. Pease, novella, in Astounding (Aug 1951)
  9. "City of the Tiger", by John Brunner, novelette, in Science Fiction #32 (Dec 1958)
  10. "The City That Grew in the Sea", by Keith Laumer, novella, in If (Mar 1964)
{to be done} There is the sometimes darker and usually more magical (Fantasy as opposed to Science Fiction) related theme of strange cities or, in some cases, vast buildings or castles which are virtual cities, or imaginary versions of real cities, all lumped under the term: Urban Fantasy:
  1. "Dan Leno and the Limehouse Golem", by Peter Ackroyd (1994): London
  2. "The Great Fire of London", by Peter Ackroyd (1982)
  3. "La Peau de chagrin", by Honore de Balzac (1831): Paris
  4. "Ariel", by Stephen Boyett (1983): New York
  5. "Animal Planet", by Scott Bradfield (1995): New York, BAMBI'S CHILDREN
  6. various works, by Jonathan Carroll (???): Vienna
  7. "The Passion of New Eve", by Angela Carter (1977): New York
  8. several novels, by Jerome Charyn: New York
  9. "Little, Big", by John Crowley (1981): New York
  10. "Funny Papers", by Tom de Haven (1985): New York
  11. the "Borribles" novels, by Michael de Larrabeiti (19??): the secret parts of London
  12. various works, by Charles de Lint (???): Toronto
  13. "A Christmas Carol", by Charles Dickens (1843): technically not Fantasy, but a vividly recreated London
  14. "Oliver Twist", by Charles Dickens (1839): technically not Fantasy, but a vividly recreated London
  15. "On Wings of Song", by Thomas M. Disch (1979): New York
  16. "The Waterworks", by E. L. Doctorow (1994): New York
  17. "Sherlock Holmes", stories and novels by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1839): technically not Fantasy, but a vividly recreated London
  18. "So, You Want to Be a Wizard", by Dianne Duane (1983): New York
  19. "The Count of Monte Cristo", by Alexander Dumas (1846): technically not Fantasy, but a vividly recreated Paris (see Victor Hugo and Eugene Sue, below)
  20. "Venice", by Daphne du Maurier (???): Venice, also in the film adaptation of "Don't Look Now"
  21. "Deathbird Stories", by Harlan Ellison (1975): New York
  22. "Time and Again", by Jack Finney (1970): New York, TIME TRAVEL
  23. "Roofworld", by Christopher Fowler (1994): the secret parts of London
  24. the "New York" series, by Esther M. Friesner (19??): New York
  25. "Rats and Gargoyles", by Mary Gentle (1990)
  26. the "Hawk & Fisher" novels, by Simon R. Green (19??)
  27. "Fantastic Chicago", ed. by Martin H. Greenberg (1991): Chicago anthology
  28. "The Wizard of 4th Street", by Simon Hawke (1987): New York
  29. "Winter's Tale", by Mark Helprin (1993): New York
  30. "The Medusa Frequency", by Russell Hoban (1987): London's Soho as influenced by Piranesi (see below)
  31. "Falling Angel", by William Hjortsberg (1978): New York
  32. "Notre-Dame de Paris", by Victor Hugo (1831): Cathedral and Paris romanticized
  33. "The Werewolf's Tale", by Richard Jaccoma (1988): New York
  34. "The Castle", by Franz Kafka (????): based on Prague
  35. "Down Town: A Fantasy", by Tappan King & Viido Polikarpus (1985): New York
  36. "The Game of Thirty", by William Kotzwinkle (1994): New York
  37. various works, by Fritz Leiber (???): San Francisco
  38. the "Lankhmar" stories, by Fritz Leiber (???): imaginary city
  39. "Freddie the Piegeon", by Seymour Leichman (1972): New York, BAMBI'S CHILDREN
  40. "The Wizard of the Pigeons", by Megan Lindholm (1986): Seattle
  41. "The Phantom of the Opera", by Gaston Leroux (1910): Paris
  42. "The Confession", by Harry Matthews (1962): New York
  43. "The Last American", by John Ames Mitchell (1889): New York
  44. "Mother London", by Michael Moorcock (1988): London
  45. "Where the Blue Begins", by Christopher Morley (1922): New York, BAMBI'S CHILDREN
  46. "The Golem", by Gustav Meyrink (1988): Prague
  47. "Carceri d'Invenzione", by Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1749-1750): intricate drawings of vast underground dungeons, suggesting a dark infinite shadow city
  48. "Vedute", by Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1745-1778): drawings which extrapolate from both modern and ancient Rome
  49. the "Ankh-Morpork" stories, by Terry Pratchett (???): imaginary city
  50. "V", by Thomas Pynchon (1963)
  51. "The Cricket in Times Square", by George Selden (1960): New York, BAMBI'S CHILDREN
  52. "The Golden", by Lucius Shepard (1990): Pirtanesian "Castle Banat"
  53. "Les mysteres de Paris", by Eugene Sue (1844)
  54. "The Castle of Otranto", by Horace Walpole (1765): and many Gothic imitations
  55. "Newer York: Stories of Science Fiction and Fantasy About the World's Greatest City", ed. by Lawrence Watt-Evans (1991): anthology
  56. "Stuart Little", by E. B. White (1945): New York, BAMBI'S CHILDREN
  57. "There Are Doors", by Gene Wolfe (1988): imaginary city
{list updated 9 July 1998} Many Fantasies are set in a fabulous alternative London (Robert Louis Stevenson, G. K. Chesterson, the art of Gustave Dore), New York (as Superman's "Metropolis" and Batman's "Gotham City"), Baghdad or Cairo, but the City as such is rarely the theme in these cases. The above analysis draws significantly from "The Encyclopedia of Fantasy" by John Clute & John Grant, New York: St.Martins, 1997, pp.975-976. {This genre essay most recently updated: 4 April 1998} RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS PAGE

CLONES

stories of genetic engineering, especially of people
CLONE: NEW: 14 hotlinks to films about clones, genetic engineering, and human duplication
also has lists of novels and stories on this and related topics (such as "intelligent animals" and "mutants") and hotlinks to sites that separate cloning fact from fiction. A tiny example of nonfiction is below:

CLONING BAN ADOPTED:

Hours after French President Jacques Chirac called for an international ban on human cloning, 19 European nations signed an agreement to prohibit the genetic replication of human beings. The actions came two days after President Clinton repeated his call for a ban on human cloning. (C) Copyright 1998 Investors Business Daily, Inc. Metadata: E/IBD E/BRF E/SN1 E/FRT E/BRF2 RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS PAGE

CYBER PUNK

239 gritty near-future tales of hackers and cyberspace The word "cyberpunk" was coined by Bruce Bethke, and made wildly popular by William Gibson, who coined the term "cyberspace" and popularized it in "Neuromancer" and its sequel novels. A startling new look at the underbelly of the computerized corporate culture of tomorrow, a distinct and new subgenre with an attitude and an agenda, Cyberpunk was soon copied, distorted, and parodied until it sank back into the ur-Culture. Soon, the best-known Cyberpunks themselves declared that Cyberpunk was dead. Some said that it had never existed, except in as "Novels of a Gibsonian Sensibility." Former journalist Bruce Sterling became the propagandist for Cyberpunk, and it soon became a wider cultural phenomenon than merely science fiction, with an impact on films, television, pop music, clothing style, and the counter-cultural scene of "Rolling Stone" and "Spin" magazine. Some 239 Cyberpunk novels (and we cast our net wide here, based on theme, computer/cyberspace/cyborg centrality, dystopian/utopian ambiguity, style, and social affiliation) include:
  1. Kathy Acker's "Blood and Guts in High School"
  2. Brian Aldiss' "Enemy of the System"
  3. Roger Allen's "The Modular Man" [Bantam, 1992]Cyborgs and Politics in Washington
  4. Janet Asimov's "Mind Transfer" [Ace, 1988]Hans Moravec downloading
  5. Richard Bachman's (Stephen King's) "The Running Man"{film hotlink to be done}
  6. J. G. Ballard's "The Atrocity Exhibition"{film hotlink to be done}
  7. J. G. Ballard's "Crash"{film hotlink to be done}
  8. Steve Barnes' "Gorgon Child"
  9. Steve Barnes' "Street Lethal"
  10. Greg Bear's "Blood Music" [Ace, 1985]First nanotechnology novel
  11. Greg Bear's "Eon"
  12. Greg Bear's "Eternity"
  13. Greg Bear's "The Forge of God": Your Humble Webmaster and his wife both appear in this novel under their own names
  14. Gregory Benford's "Great Sky River"and its sequels
  15. Alfred Bester's "Computer Connection"
  16. Alfred Bester's "Golem 100"
  17. Alfred Bester's "The Demolished Man"
  18. Alfred Bester's "The Stars My Destination"
  19. G. Betancourt's "Johnny Zed"
  20. Bruce Bethke's "Cyberpunk"
  21. Bruce Bethke's "Elimination Round"
  22. Bruce Bethke's "Headcrash"
  23. Ben Bova's "Exiled From Earth"
  24. Ben Bova's "The Dueling Machine" [Holt Rinehart, 1969]Virtual War escalates
  25. Ray Bradbury's "Farenhiet 451"{film hotlink to be done}
  26. David Brin's "Earth"
  27. John Brunner's "Stand on Zanzibar"
  28. John Brunner's "The Jagged Orbit"
  29. John Brunner's "The Sheep Look Up"
  30. John Brunner's "The Shockwaver Rider" [Ace, 1975]: computer viruses described in 1975!
  31. John Brunner's "The Stone That Never Came Down"
  32. Algis Budrys' "Michaelmas"
  33. Algis Budrys' "Who?" [Ballentine, 1958]Cyborg identity crisis
  34. Anthony Burgess's "A Clockwork Orange"
  35. William Burroughs's "Naked Lunch"
  36. William Burroughs's "Nova Express"
  37. Jack Butler's "Nightshade"
  38. Pat Cadigan's "Indigo"
  39. Pat Cadigan's "Mindplayers"
  40. Pat Cadigan's "Patterns"
  41. Pat Cadigan's "Pretty Boy Crossover", in 4th Annual Year's Best SF, ed. G. Dozois [St.Martins, 1987]
  42. Pat Cadigan's "Synners" [Bantam, 1991]
  43. Martin Caidin's "Cyborg" [Ballentine, 1972]became TV's "Six Million Dollar Man"
  44. Martin Caidin's "Manfac" [Baen, 1981]harder-edged cyborg novel
  45. Orson Scott Card's "Ender's Game" [Tor, 1985]Simulations escalate to war
  46. Orson Scott Card's "Speaker for the Dead" [Tor, 1986?]Ender is cyborged
  47. Orson Scott Card's "Xenocide" [Tor, 1987?]end of trilogy
  48. Anne Carlisle's "Liquid Sky"{film hotlink to be done}
  49. Raymond Chandler's "The Big Sleep"for the style and language
  50. C. J. Cherryh's "Cyteen" [Popular Library, 1988]clones and space colonies
  51. Michael Crichton's "The Terminal Man" [Avon, 1972]brain-stimulation murder
  52. Michael Crichton's "Jurassic Park" [Ballantine, 1990]DNA, Dinos, Chaos
  53. Ronald Anthony Cross's "Prisoners of Paradise"
  54. Samuel Delany's "Babel-17"
  55. Samuel Delany's "Nova"
  56. Don DeLillo's "White Noise"
  57. Bradley Denton's "Wrack'n'Roll"
  58. Philip K. Dick's "A Scanner Darkly"
  59. Philip K. Dick's "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep" [Doubleday, 1968] became "Blade Runner" {film hotlink to be done}
  60. Philip K. Dick's "Flow My Tears the Policeman Said"
  61. Gordon Dickson's "The R-Master"
  62. William Dietz's "Matrix Man" [Penguin, 1990]
  63. George Alec Effinger's "A Fire in the Sun"
  64. George Alec Effinger's "The Exile Kiss"
  65. George Alec Effinger's "When Gravity Fails"
  66. Mick Farren's "The Feelies"
  67. Mick Farren's "The Last Stand of the DNA Cowboys"
  68. Mick Farren's "The Long Orbit"
  69. Clifford Faust's "The Death of Honor"
  70. Clifford Faust's "The Company Man"
  71. Grant Fjermedal's "The Tomorrow Makers": nonfiction
  72. E. M. Forster's "The Machine Stops" [1909!]hived humans in soulless mechanical civilization
  73. Alan Dean Foster's "Cyber Way"
  74. Daniel Galouye's "Conterfeit World" [Bantam, 1969]Simulated man wants body
  75. William Gibson's "Burning Chrome" [Ace, 1987]
  76. William Gibson's "Count Zero" [London: Gollancz, 1986]
  77. William Gibson's "Mona Lisa Overdrive" [Bantam, 1988]
  78. William Gibson's "Neuromancer" [Ace, 1984]
  79. William Gibson's "Virtual Light" [Bantam, 1994]
  80. William Gibson's "The Difference Engine"with Bruce Stirling
  81. Ron Goulart's "Barking Dogs"
  82. Ron Goulart's "Cowboy Heaven"
  83. Ron Goulart's "Crackpot"
  84. Joseph Green's "The Mind Behind the Eye" [Daw, 1961]Humans parasitically spy on aliens
  85. Isidore Haiblum's "The Mutants are Coming"
  86. Joe Haldeman's "Buying Time" [Avon, 1989]medical cyborg plots conquest
  87. Karl Hansen's "War Games" [Playboy, 1981]android warriors
  88. Harry Harrisons's "Make Room! Make Room!"became "Soylent Green"
  89. Simon Hawke's "Psychodrome"
  90. Robert Heinlein's "Waldo, Genius in Orbit" in "Waldo and Magic, Inc." [Avon, 1950] First telemanipulator fiction
  91. Robert Heinlein's "Starship Troopers" [Signet, 1959]interstellar exoskeleton soldiers {film hotlink to be done}
  92. Christopher Heinz's "Ash Ock"
  93. Christopher Heinz's "Leigh Killer"
  94. William Hjortsberg's "Gray Matters" [Bantam, 1971]"cerebromorph" brains-without-bodies as solution to overpopulation
  95. L. Ron Hubbard's "Eulogy for Lisa"
  96. Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World"
  97. Karie Jacobson's "Simulations: 15 Tales of Virtual Reality" [Citadel Twilight, 1993]
  98. K. W. Jeter's "Death Arms"
  99. K. W. Jeter's "Dr. Adder"
  100. K. W. Jeter's "Farewell Horizontal"
  101. K. W. Jeter's "Infernal Devices"
  102. K. W. Jeter's "The Glass Hammer"
  103. Richard Kadrey's "Metrophage"
  104. James Kunetka's "Nature's End"
  105. Marc Laidlaw's "Dad's Nuke"
  106. Marc Laidlaw's "Nutrimancer": parody of the genre
  107. Stanislaw Lem's "Memoirs Found in a Bathtub"
  108. S. N. Lewitt's "Cybernetic Jungle"
  109. S. N. Lewitt's "Cyberstealth"
  110. S. N. Lewitt's "Dancing Vac"
  111. Mark Leyner's "American Made"
  112. Mark Leyner's "I Was an Infinitely Hot and Dense Dot"
  113. Mark Leyner's "My Cousin My Gastroenterologist"
  114. Charles de Lint's "Svaha"
  115. Jonathan Littell's "Bad Voltage"
  116. Tom Maddox's "Halo"
  117. George R. R. Martin's "The Armageddon Rag"
  118. Larry McCaffery's "Storming the Reality Studio: A Casebook of Cyberpunk and Postmodernist Fiction": critical review of the genre
  119. Anne McCaffrey's "The Ship Who Sang" [Bantam, 1969]brain-spaceship cyborgs
  120. Ian McDonald's "Out on Blue Six"
  121. Maureen McHugh's "China Mountain Zhang" [Tor, 1992]Gay/Cyborg/Chinese future
  122. Vonda McIntyre's "Starfarers" [Bantam, 1987]gene computers
  123. Vonda McIntyre's "Transition" [Bantam, 1990]sequel to "Starfarers"
  124. Vonda McIntyre's "???" [Bantam, 1993?]3rd book of trilogy
  125. John McLoughlin's "The Helix and the Sword"
  126. Victor Milan's "The Cybernetic Samurai" [Arbor, 1985]
  127. Victor Milan's "The Cybernetic Shogun"
  128. Michael Moorcock's "The Cornelius Chronicles], Vols. 1,2,3
  129. C. L. Moore's "No Woman Born", short story [1941]early cyborg fiction
  130. Daniel Keys Moran's "Armageddon Blues"
  131. Daniel Keys Moran's "Emerald Eyes"
  132. Daniel Keys Moran's "The Long Run"
  133. Ed Naha's "Robocop 2" [Jove, 1990]novelization {film hotlink to be done}
  134. Larry Niven's "Becalmed in Hell" short story [Astounding, date??]
  135. Larry Niven & Stephen Barnes' "Dream Park" [Phantasia Press, 1981]VR themepark muder
  136. Larry Niven & Stephen Barnes' "The Barsoom Project" [Ace, 1989]sequel to "Dream Park"
  137. Larry Niven & Stephen Barnes' "California Voodoo Game" [Ballentine, 1992] 3rd of "Dream Park" trilogy
  138. Rebecca Ore's "The Illegal Rebirth of Billy the Kid" [Tor, 1991]clone/class war
  139. George Orwell's "1984"
  140. David Osborn's "Heads" [Bantam, 1985]cyborg thriller
  141. Dennis Paoli's "Robot Jox" [Avon, 1989]gladiator exoskeleton {film hotlink to be done}
  142. Marge Piercy's "He, She, and It" [Fawcett, 1991]Feminist Cyberpunk
  143. Frederik Pohl's "Beyond the Blue Event Horizon"
  144. Frederik Pohl's "Gateway"
  145. Frederik Pohl's "Heechee Rendezvous"
  146. Frederik Pohl's "Man Plus" [Bantam, 1976]AI/Cyborg
  147. Frederik Pohl's "The Annals of the Heechee"
  148. Frederik Pohl & C. M. Kornbluth's "Wolfbane" [Bantam, 1976; expanded from Galaxy, 1957] Extraterrestrials abduct humans to use their brains in computer network
  149. M. C. Poyer's "The Stepfather Bank"
  150. Thomas Pynchon's "Gravity's Rainbow"
  151. Thomas Pynchon's "The Crying of Lot 49"
  152. Thomas Pynchon's "Vineland"
  153. W. T. Quick's "Dreams of Flesh"
  154. W. T. Quick's "Dreams of God"
  155. W. T. Quick's "Singularities"
  156. W. T. Quick's "Systems"
  157. W. T. Quick's "Dreams of Flesh"
  158. W. T. Quick's "Yesterday's Pawn"
  159. Robert Reed's "The Hormone Jungle"
  160. Kim Stanley Robinson's "The Gold Coast"
  161. Kim Stanley Robinson's "The Memory of Whiteness"
  162. Spider Robinson's "Mindkiller"
  163. Rudy Rucker's "Masters of Space and Time"
  164. Rudy Rucker's "SoftWare" [Avon, 1982]Lunar AI robots abduct humans, slice their brains, download into robots, wonder why people don't appreciate this
  165. Rudy Rucker's "Spacetime Donuts"
  166. Rudy Rucker's "The 57th Franz Kafka"
  167. Rudy Rucker's "The Secret of Life"
  168. Rudy Rucker's "WetWare" [Avon, 1988]sequel to "SoftWare"
  169. Rudy Rucker's "White Light"
  170. Richard Paul Russo's "Destroying Angel"
  171. Fred Saberhagen's "The Frankenstein Papers" [Baen, 1986] ingenious deconstruction of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley's "Frankenstein" from the monster's point of view
  172. Thomas N. Scortia & George Zebrowski's "Human-Machines: An Anthology of Stories About Cyborgs" [Vintage, 1975]essential anthology
  173. William Shatner [& Ron Goulart]'s "TekWar" [Ace, 1991]and two sequels {TV hotlink to be done}
  174. Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley's "Frankenstein"
  175. Lucius Shepard's "Green Eyes"
  176. Lucius Shepard's "Life During wartime"
  177. Joe Henry Sherman's "Corpsman" [Ballentine, 1988]Interplanetary cyborg astronaut-pilots, in some sense a modernization of "Scanners Live in Vain" by Cordwainer Smith
  178. Lewis Shiner's "Deserted Cities of the Heart"
  179. Lewis Shiner's "Frontera"
  180. John Shirley's "A Song Called Youth 1: Eclipse"
  181. John Shirley's "A Song Called Youth 2: Eclipse Penumbra"
  182. John Shirley's "A Song Called Youth 1: Eclipse Corona"
  183. John Shirley's "Heatseeker"
  184. John Shirley's "Total Eclipse"
  185. John Shirley's "Transmaniacon"
  186. Susan Shwartz's "Heritage of Flight" [Tor, 1989]
  187. Robert Silverberg's "Shadrach in the Furnace"
  188. Robert Silverberg's "The World Inside"
  189. John Sladek's "The Muller-Fokker Effect" [Morrow, 1971]absurd self-reproducing machines
  190. Norman Spinrad's "Agent of Chaos"
  191. Norman Spinrad's "Little Heroes"
  192. Norman Spinrad's "Other Americas"
  193. Norman Spinrad's "Riding the Torch"
  194. Norman Spinrad's "Streetman"
  195. Olaf Stapledon's "Last and First Men"
  196. Olaf Stapledon's "Star Maker"
  197. Neil Stephenson's "Snowcrash" [Bantam, 1992]
  198. Neil Stephenson's "Diamond Age" [Bantam, 1995]nanotechnology/hypermedia
  199. Bruce Stirling's "Crystal Express" [Ace, 1990]bio-cyborgs (Shapers) versus electro-cyborgs (Mechanists) as humanity splits into two "clades" as start of speciation
  200. Bruce Stirling's "Involution Ocean"
  201. Bruce Stirling's "Islands in the Net" [Arbor, 1988]cyberculture meets international crime, and the protagonists have to change the baby's diapers in mid-adventure
  202. Bruce Stirling's "Mirrorshades": definitive anthology
  203. Bruce Stirling's "Schismatrix" [Ace, 1985]bio-cyborgs (Shapers) versus electro-cyborgs (Mechanists) as humanity splits into two "clades" as start of speciation
  204. Bruce Stirling's "The Artificial Kid"
  205. Bruce Stirling's "The Difference Engine"(with William Gibson)
  206. Robert Stone's "Dog Soldiers"
  207. Whitley Streiber's "Nature's End"
  208. Michael Swanwick's "In the Drift"
  209. Michael Swanwick's "Stations of the Tide"
  210. Michael Swanwick's "Vacuum Flowers"
  211. Craig Thomas's "Firefox" [Bantam, 1977]technothriller about theft of brain-reading aircraft {film hotlink to be done}
  212. Thomas T. Thomas's "Me"
  213. Thomas T. Thomas's "Crygender" [Baen, 1992]cyborg/transexual/murder
  214. James Tiptree Jr.'s "The Girl Who Was Plugged In" [1973; Tor, 1989]
  215. Michael Swanwick's "In the Drift"
  216. John Varley's "Blue Champagne"short story collection
  217. John Varley's "Millennium"time-travel, post-apocalypse, human/robot sex
  218. John Varley's "The Persistence of Vision"short story collection
  219. John Varley's "Steel Beach" [Ace, 1992]Lunar cyborgs
  220. Joan Vinge's "Catspaw"
  221. Joan Vinge's "Psion"
  222. Vernor Vinge's "Marooned in Real Time"
  223. Vernor Vinge's "The Peace War"
  224. Vernor Vinge's "Threats and Other Promises"
  225. Vernor Vinge's "True Names and Other Stories" [Bluejay, 1984] title story is early VR/cyberspace/hacker fiction
  226. Michael D. Weaver's "Mercedes Nights"
  227. Michael D. Weaver's "My Father Immortal"
  228. Walter John Williams' "Angel Station" [Tor, 1989]
  229. Walter John Williams' "Facets"
  230. Walter John Williams' "Hardwired" [Tor, 1986]
  231. Walter John Williams' "Solip System"
  232. Walter John Williams' "Voice of the Whirlwind" [Tor, 1987]
  233. Jack Williamson's "Manseed" [Del Rey, 1982]cyborg panspermia
  234. Robert C. Wilson's "Memory Wire"
  235. Bernard Wolfe's "Limbo" [Ace, 1956]postapocalypse prosthetics
  236. Dave Wolverton's "On My Way to Paradise"
  237. Jack Womack's "Ambient"
  238. Jack Womack's "Terraplane"
  239. Chelsea Quinn Yarbo's "Hyacinths"
the above based on (1) an on-line list compiled by James Harrison; (2) the Bibliography by Chris Hables Gray and Steven Mentor in "The Cyborg Handbook", New York/London: Routledge, 1995 Hotlinks to the most cyberpunk-central of these writers include: William Gibson Finnish site about his works Bruce R. Bethke -- who invented the very word "cyberpunk" and authored the award-winning novel "Headcrash" : no known personal home page, but CompuServe e-mail Bruce R. Bethke @ AlphaRalpha e-mail Bruce R. Bethke @ Compuserve Bruce Sterling For a list of Cyberpunk books, with summaries, see: Cyberpunk Book List Four of the best Cyberpunk web sites are: Unofficial Cyberpunk Home Page Mirrorshades on the Well Lysator's Searchable Cyberpunk Authors Archive Zeta Tanuki's Cyberpunk page a very individualistic student at Kapi'olani Community College in Hawaii probes deeply into: "Near Future Films" "Near Future TV/Videos" "Near Future Printed Material" "Other Things of Interest" Another short definition of Cyberpunk is in: "What Is Cyberpunk?" {to be done} RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS PAGE

DYSTOPIA:

Really, really bad futures (opposite of "Utopia") Science fiction, in its extremes, presents us with a menu of extremely dreadful futures ("Dystopias") and absolutely wonderful futures ("Utopia"). David Hartwell [Age of Wonders, New York: Walker, 1984, p.108] says: "The earliest SF that had any significant impact was the body of nineteenth century uropian writings.... Then quite suddenly, H. G. Wells in England, Kurt Lasswitz in Germany, and a host of minor writers in the U.S. and elsewhere began to write of futures altered by scientific and technological innovations. And not all these visions were optimistic. Whereas the utopian visions were undoubtedly influential, it was the anti-utopian visions of E. M. Forster, Aldous Huxley, Yevgeniy Zamyatin, Orwell, Jack London, M. P. Shiel, and, of course, H. G. Wells that really made us conscious of the future by basically making us scared of it in a new way." [Webmaster's emphasis] Some notable DYSTOPIAS in fiction, in chronological order:
  1. H. G. Wells' "The Time Machine" (1895)
  2. Yevgeny Zamiatin's "We" (1929)
  3. Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World" (1932)(London: Chatto & Windus) classic dystopia with emphasis on, for example, genetic engineering, brainwashing, censorship, destruction of the family. Science Fiction about Genetic Engineering Reproduction is done in the laboratory, with people systematically conditioned for various strata of life. Sex and all the senses are the bases of media exploitation. Literature, art, and philosophy are suppressed, production and consumption are glorified, and the god is Ford (or Freud). Workers are kept content through the drug "soma", and a "savage" is kept on an Indian reservation as a museum exhibit. Bernard Marx, of the Psychological Bureau (one of the ruling Alphas) feels isolated, his Alpha Plus friend Helmholtz Watson is creatively restless, large-breasted Lenina Crowne disgusts Bernard and bores Helmholtz, so they bring the savage John onstage, protest against soma, and are summoned by Mustapha Mond, the Resident World Controller for Western Europe. The controller is an ex-radical himself, who now loves science most. Bernard is drugged, Helmholtz exiled, and John (ambivalent over Lenina) commits suicide. Harsh, ironic, fantastic, and unforgettable.
  4. Murray Constantine's [Katharine Burdekin] "Swastika Night" [London: Victor Gollancz, 1937; Old Westbury NY: The Feminist Press, 1985] anti-nazi dystopia
  5. George Orwell's "1984" (1948)
  6. David Karp's "One" [New York: Vanguard, 1953]which was a bestseller a.k.a "Escape to Nowhere" [Lion, 1955; Universal]
  7. Ira Levin's "This Perfect Day" (1970)
  8. Edward W. Ludwig's "The Mask of John Culon" (1970)
  9. Brian Aldiss' "Enemies of the System" (1978)
  10. Margaret Atwood's "The Handmaid's Tale" (1985)
  11. Ian McDonald's "Out on Blue Six" (1989)
  12. Russell Hoban's "Fremder" (1996)
  13. Terry Bisson's "Pirates of the Universe" (1996)
  14. xxx's "yyyy" (zzzz)
Important critical studies and bibliographies of Dystopia include:
  1. "Science Fiction and the New Dark Age", by Howard L. Berger [Bowling Green, Ohio: Bowling Green University Popular Press, 1976]: examines the anti-utopian genre in a dozen thematic sub-categories
  2. "The Future as Nightmare: H. G. Wells and the Anti-Utopians", by Mark R. Hillegas [New York: Oxford University Press, 1967; Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1974]
  3. "From Utopia to Nightmare" by Chad Walsh [New York and Evanston: Harper & Row, 1962; Westport CT: Greenwood Press, 1972]: traces the replacement of Utopian fiction by Dystopian or "inverted utopia" fiction.
  4. "Voices Prophecying War 1763-1984", by I. F. Clarke, [London: Oxford University Press, 1966]: first, and still definitive study and index to future war/imaginary war/military technology fiction, which sometimes takes on a distinctly dystopian flavor
J. B. S. Haldane, who warns in his 1928 reprint in "Possible Worlds" of his even older essay "Man's Destiny": "Unless [Mankind] can control his own evolution as he is learning to control that of domesticated plants and animals, man and all his works will go down into oblivion and darkness." RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS PAGE

ECOLOGY:

environmental science and biology Your Humble Webmaster did Ph.D. research in biology (Artificial Life and Nanotechnology) in the mid-1970s, and taught Ecology at the experimental college of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. His newest page in The Ultimate Science Fiction Web Guide may be found at: Ecology and Science Fiction RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS PAGE

EXTRA-SENSORY PERCEPTION:

telepathy, psi, other paths to the mind

Remembrance and reflection, how allied; What thin partitions sense from thought divide. --Alexander Pope

Where to start? Well, there were telepathic aliens in "Fifteen Months in the Moon", by G. H. Ryan (1880). Published in 1885, there was a super-perceptive girl -- when she was hypnotized -- in "The Bohemian" by Fitz-James O'Brien, but he wrote it some time before 1862. 20 Good book-length examples since then include:
  1. Jim Aikin's [James Douglas Aikin] "The Wall at the Edge of the World" [Ace, 1993] telepathy and utopia
  2. "The Demolished Man" by Alfred Bester (1952)
  3. "Jack of Eagles", by James Blish [Greenberg, 1952; Avon, 1958, as "ESP-er"
  4. "Psionic Menace" by John Brunner [Ace, 1963]
  5. "Telepathist" by John Brunner (19??)
  6. Algis Budrys' "Rogue Moon" (Fawcett Gold Medal, 1960): the protagonist with a death wish is again and again transmitted to the Moon to explore a deadly alien maze, and is in telepathic contact with his earth-based "original" version
  7. "Out of Sight, Out of Mind" by Chester Aaron [Lippincott, Sep 1985; Bantam Spectra, 1986] juvenile, telepathic twins vs. international terrorists
  8. "Pstalemate", by Lester del Rey, New York: G.P. Putam's (1971)
  9. "Time for the Stars" by Robert Heinlein [Scribners, 1956]telepathy between twins, one of whom stays on Earth, one of whom rockets to the stars and ages more slowly. Telepathy is shown to be inheritable.
  10. "The Dead Zone" by Stephen King (1979): precognition affects political candidate
  11. "Mutant" by Henry Kuttner [Gnome, 1953, as Lewis Padgett; Ballentine Books; Garland, 1976]: telepathy
  12. "The ESP Worlds", by J. T. M'Intosh, New Worlds #16-18, (Nov 1952)
  13. "The Inner Wheel" by Keith Roberts [Doubleday, 1970]: telepathy
  14. "And Chaos Died" by Joanna Russ [Ace, 1970]: telepathy
  15. "Three to Conquer" by Eric Frank Russell [Avalon, 1956; Ace]: telepathy
  16. "Dying Inside" by Robert Silverberg (1972)
  17. "The Espers" by Steven M. Souza [Lenox Hill, 1972]
  18. "More than Human" by Theodore Sturgeon (1953)
  19. "Wild Talent" by Wilson Tucker [Rinehart, 1954; Avon; Bantam, 1955, as "Man from Tomorrow"]: telepathy
  20. "Slan" by A. E. Van Vogt (1940)
  21. "The Chrysalids" by John Wyndham [19??]: telepathy
13 short fictions and one "factual article" about E.S.P. may be found in "14 Great Tales of ESP", edited by Idella Purnell Stone, with an Introduction by John W. Campbell [London: Hodder Fawcett, 1969] [magazines and dates added by Magic Dragon Multimedia]:
  1. Isaac Asimov's "Belief" [Astounding, Oct 1953]: Physics versus levitation
  2. Reginald Bretnor's "The Man On Top" [F&SF, Sep 1960]: Mountain climbing, or is it?
  3. Fredric Brown's "Preposterous": what is balderdash, and what is not?
  4. Walter Bupp's "Modus Vivendi" [Astounding, Sep 1961]unethical telepaths and crime
  5. Mark Clifton & Alex Apostolides' "What Thin Partitions" [Astounding, Sep 1953]: industrial psychokinesis
  6. Randall Garrett's "The Foreign Hand Tie" [Astounding, Dec 1961]: espionage via telepathy between identical twins
  7. Robert A. Heinlein's "Project Nightmare" [Amazing, Apr/May 1953]: clairvoyance and A-bombs
  8. Zenna Henderson's "Ararat" [F&SF, Oct 1952]: the first of "The People" stories, about psi-gifted aliens who live on Earth
  9. Murray Leinster's "The Leader" [Astounding, Feb 1960]: long-distance mass-hypnotism
  10. Mack Reynolds' "I'm A Stranger Here Myself" [Thrilling Wonder Stories, Apr 1951]: kinship in a foreign city
  11. Eric Frank Russell's "And Still It Moves": "factual article"
  12. James H. Schmitz's "These Are The Arts" [F&SF, Sep 1962]: telepathic masters, we're slaves
  13. Jay Williams' "False Image" [Astounding, Oct 1958]: noise disorts telepathy?
  14. Robert F. Young's "The Garden in the Forest" [Astounding, Feb 1953]: psi perception of symbols
and some other fine short stories about E.S.P. are:
  1. Manly Bannister's "Psi for Psurvival" [Saturn, July 1957]
  2. Walter Bupp's "Psi for Sale" [Astounding, Sep 1965]
  3. Philip K. Dick's "Psi-Man Heal My Child!" [Imaginative Tales, Nov 1955]
  4. Kenneth Bulmer's "Psi No More" [Science Fiction #14, June 1955]
  5. Philip E. High's "The Psi Squad" [New Worlds #114, Jan 1962]
  6. Darrell T. Langhart's (Randall Garrett) "Psichopath" [Astounding, Oct 1960]
  7. John Victor Peterson & Edward S. Staub's "The Psilent Partner" [Fantastic Universe, Mar 1954]
  8. John A. Sentry's (A. J. Budrys) "Psioid Charley" [Astounding, May 1956]
  9. Murray Leinster's "The Psionic Mousetrap" [Amazing, Mar 1955]
  10. Vance Simonds's "Telempathy" [Amazing, Jun 1963]
  11. Leigh Brackett's "Teleportress of Alpha C" [Planet Stories, Winter 1954-55]
Science fiction magazines delight in printing nonfiction articles on the subject, such as:
  1. H. M. Mack, "Are You Telepathic", Science Fiction Digest, #2, Fall 1954
What do we mean by E.S.P.? We mean ways other than sight, smell, sound, taste, and touch by which knowledge of the outside world (or the interior world of other beings) is apprehended and becomes directly known. This category overlaps that vague one of "psychic phenomena." Some say that everyone has a touch of E.S.P. and that, for example, anyone can be taught to dowse for undergound water or treasure. Some say that E.S.P. was once common to humanity, but has almost died out. "The Inheritors" by William Golding, for instance, has kindly telepathic empathetic Neanderthals gradually displaced by the quarrelsome Cro Magnons -- us -- who have to substitute language for the genetically missing gift of mind-to-mind contact. E.S.P. has also been called "parapsychology" and has been abbreviated by the Greek letter "Psi." As a result, E.S.P. is sometimes simply called "Psi" and some science fiction authors use the term "psionics." Besides telepathy (mind-reading) and telempathy (emotion-reading), experts talk about psychokinesis (PK for short) or "mind over matter" -- moving objects by mental powers alone. Precognition is the hypothetical ability to sense future evenbts before they occur. "Remote Viewing" or Clairvoyance or Scrying is the talent for seeing things not actually before your eyes, and similarly Clairaudience is the ability to hear impossibly faint or far away sounds. Fictional characters sometimes have the ability to knw where they are, or where their goal is, without compass or map. Psychometry is the ability to sense what has touched some physical object being touched by the ESP-sensitive person. Bilocation is the putative ability to be in two places at the same time. Pyrokinesis is the capability to start fires by mental action alone. Apportation is the subset of teleportation consisting of mentally bringing an object to the empowered person. I have experimented in my fiction with new forms of ESP, such as Precognitive Smell, but only as a joke, as ESP-type magical talents have so proliferated in recent attempting-to-be-original Fantasy. There have been many studies, and no firm conclusion can be made from their data. Some nonfiction references include:
  1. R. Broughton's "Parapsychology: The Controversial Science", New York: Ballentine (1991)
  2. Ciba Foundation's "ESP--Extrasensory Perception", Boston: Little Brown (1956)
  3. H. L. Edge, R. L. Morris, J. H. Rush, & J. palmer, "Foundations of Parapsychology: Exploring the Boundaries of Human Capability", London: Routledge & Kegan Paul (1986)
  4. H. J. Eysenck & C. Sargent's "Explaining the Unexplained: Mysteies of the Paranormal", London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson (1982)
  5. H. J. Irwin's "An Introduction to Parapsychology", London: McFarland (1989)
  6. S. Krippner's [editor] "Advances in Parapsychological Research (Volumes 1-6)", New York: Plenum Press (1977, 1978, 1982); London: McFarland (1984, 1987, 1991)
  7. J. Gaither Pratt's "Parapsychology: An Insider's View of E.S.P.", New York: Doubleday (1964)
  8. J. B. Rhine, J. G. Pratt, C. C. Thomas's "Parapsychology: Frontier Science of the Mind" Springfield, Illinois (1964?)
  9. G. R. Schmeidler & R. A. McConnell's "ESP and Personality Patterns" Yale University Press (1958)
  10. G. R. Schmeidler's "Parapsychology and Psychology", London: McFarland (1988)
  11. B. Shapin & L. Coly's [editors] "Psi and States of Awareness", New York: Parapsychology Foundation (1978)
  12. B. B. Wolman's (editor): "Handbook of Parapsychology", New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold
Some books which debunk, refute, or question claims of ESP include:
  1. J. E. Alcock's "Parapsychology: Science or Magic? A Psychological Perspective", Oxford: Pergamon (1981)
  2. {to be done}
  3. xxxx
Some recommended Journals on ESP are:
  1. Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research, published quarterly by the American Society for Psychical Research
  2. European Journal of Parapsychology, published annually by the Koestler Chair of Parasychology, University of Edinburgh
  3. Journal of Parapsychology, published quarterly by Parapsychology Press
  4. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, published quarterly by the Society for Psychical Resarch
  5. The Skeptical Inquirer, published quarterly by SCICOP
See the Authors' page in the Ultimate Science Fiction Web Guide for more on these E.S.P. authors:
  1. M. Bernstein
  2. H. Carrington
  3. E. J. Dingwall
  4. E. J. Garrett
  5. R. Heywood
  6. R. Lindner
  7. A. Pukarich
  8. J. B. Rhine
  9. S. G. Soal
  10. xxx
Here's a wonderful quotation, over 300 years old, setting forth the goal of neuroscience:
"Since the brain is a machine [Descartes, 1664] we need not hope to discover its artifice by methods other than those that are used to find for other machines. There remains to be done, therefore, only what would be done for all other machines. I mean the dismantling of all its components, piece by piece, and consideration of what they can do separately and as a whole." -- Steno, 1669.
See Science, 11 July 2003, p.170
Telepathy and Extraterrestrials. While there is no clear evidence that people can ever "read" each others' minds, we are socially familiar with the notion of telepathy, and many cultures have such a notion. There are South American natives who believe that the drug Yage allows people to read minds in religious ceremonies, and J.B. Rhine and others at Duke University have performed experiments which tantalized some scientists for decades. It may be that telepathy would give such a Darwinian advantage to any creature that evolves it that the very lack of such creatures on Earth means that telepathy is impossible. But we can't be sure. After all, in one of the few science fiction novels written by a Nobel Prize winner, William Golding's The Inheritors {11}, telepathic Neanderthals are displaced by non-telepathic Homo Sapiens who, without the mental advantage of telepathy, are forced to develop language and technology. The suggestion here is that telepathy is actually an evolutionary DISadvantage. If the ET is telepathic, there are several possibilities. Maybe we can "hear" its thoughts, and it can't hear ours. This gives our Science Team an advantage to exploit. Maybe it can "hear" our thoughts, but cannot project messages back into our minds. If so, it has the responsibility to let us know, which puts us back to square one. Maybe we can sense its emotions, or it can sense ours. This is of limited value, since we may not have the same emotions, and even human emotional communications (i.e. music) produce at best ambiguous results. Kurt Vonnegut {12} (p.198) has fictional author Kilgore Trout write "Earth was the only place in the known universe where language was used... Everybody else used mental telepathy.... They [when humans taught them language] could get so much more done with language.... Mental telepathy, with everyone constantly telling everybody everything, produced a sort of generalized indifference to all information. But language, with its slow, narrow meanings, made it possible to think of one thing at a time -- to start thinking in terms of projects." If clear signals can go from ET to human and back by telepathy, we need a very disciplined human thinker to communicate. I suggest an expert in meditation, with a sense of humor and a delight in technology, such as the Dalai Lama. Whatever you do, keep everyone else out of telepathy range, or else the ET may tap into unspoken violence, prejudice, or the chaotic human unconsciousness. The single best ESP site on the World Wide Web is the highly recommended: Koestler Parapsychology Unit at the University of Edinburgh. This site includes:
  1. Definition
  2. Information
  3. Reading Lists
  4. ON-LINE EXPERIMENTS
  5. FAQ
  6. Announcements
  7. Forum (threaded discussion)
  8. List of hotlinks
  9. Feedback
  10. Guestbook
  11. Glossary
and more. {This genre essay most recently updated: 4 April 1998} RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS PAGE

FASTER THAN LIGHT:

impossibly fast travel, beyond the Einstein barrier [update of 22 March 2000] Since Albert Einstein's Theory of Special Relativity, and until the 1990s, it was the scientific consensus that matter could never travel faster than "C" -- the speed of light in a vacuum. That did not stop Science Fiction from evolving the theme of FTL (Faster-Than-Light). FTL would allow spacecraft to get to interesting places within a human lifetime. In the past decade, various loopholes in Einstein's speed limit are being taken more seriously. Scientists have mounted searches for "Tachyons" -- hypothetical particles which can only travel faster than light. Various theories relate FTL to ANTIGRAVITY. Sometimes, in these stories, FTL is achieved by BEAM ME UP: matter transmission, techno-teleportation. Books About FTL (Faster-Than-Light) Travel:
  1. Moon of Arcturus, Richard Tooker [1935]some unexplained atomic propulsion method allows the "Meteor III" spaceship, from the energy of "disrupting carbon atoms", to accelerate to the speed of light. The 18-man crew reaches Arcturus in 26 years, but with no "time dilation" as demanded by Einstein's and Lorentz's equations.
  2. Grey Lensman, E.E. Smith [1939]spacecraft tap into "cosmic energy" to power the "Bergenholm inertialess drive", allowing speeds up to 60 parsecs per hour (roughly 2,000,000 times the speed of light) in interstellar space, and up to 100,000 parsecs per hour (roughly 3 billion times the speed of light) in the intergalactic spaces where there is less dust to slow the ships down.
  3. Second Stage Lensman, E.E. Smith [1940?]the Medonian race used an "inertia-neutralizer" to turn their home planet into an FTL spaceship, and travel to "Lundmark's Nebula", also called "The Second Galaxy."
  4. Slan, A.E. van Vogt [Astounding, Oct 1940; Arkham House, 1946; revised text Simon & Schuster, 1951; Tor/Orb, 1998] Some sort of "atomic drive" is mentioned as depending on antigravity, but doesn't figure strongly in the plot.
  5. Methusalah's Children, Robert A. Heinlein [1941; Gnome, 1958; Science Fiction Book Club #05800, Jan 1993]"spacedrive that uses light presure under conditions of no inertia to travel just under the speed of light."
  6. Cities in Flight, James Blish [1958; Baen, 1991]series of novels written 1950-57, they key technology is the "spindizzy." Supposedly invented in the early 21st Century, the "Dillon-Wagoner gravitron polarity generator" (spindizzy) changes the magnetic moment off all atoms within its field, thus changing the gravitational constant, according to the bogus "Blackett-Dirac equation." For some unexplained reason, reducing the gravity of a city-sized spaceship allows it to break the speed of light, and use a tiny amount of power to do so. Earth's cities are converted to spaceships, and colonize the galaxy.
  7. Way Station, Clifford Simak [1964]de facto FTL by matter transmission in a galaxy-spanning network of "transfer booths" created by a mysterious alien supercivilization
  8. To Outlive Eternity, Poul Anderson [1967]perhaps the first careful treatment of Special Relativity as it relates to interstellar, intergalactic, and beyond-the-collapse-of-the-univrse travel.
  9. Ringworld, Larry Niven [1970]the unseen alien "Puppet Masters" have achieved de facto FTL by teleportation devices known as "stepping disks" and "transfer booths"
  10. Life Probe, Michael McCollum [1983]; and Procyon's Promise [1985] ancient alien civilization ("The Makers") have, after millions of fruitless years, abandoned their search for FTL according to their own tehories. They send out fleets of robotic "slow boats" powered by fusion-drive "I-mass" Hawking Singularities, slower than light, in hopes of finding a civilization that has achieved FTL. One of these reaches our Solar System, and we join the search, finding an empty FTL spaceship orbiting Procyon. It seems that the aliens finally grasped FTL and fled their home planet.
  11. Songs of Distant Earth, Arthur C. Clarke [Ballantine/Del Rey, Oct 1986] FTL is impossible, in this entertaining "Hard Science Fiction" novel, but 36th Century spaceship "Magellan" flies at 20% light-speed by tapping into the energy of empty space (Planck-scale quantum fluctuation zero-energy) by means of even more esoteric "fluctuations in the geometrodynamic structure of 11 dimensional superspace." At 20% C, the ship is endangered by smashing into stray interstellar atoms, so the ship is shielded in front with 100,000 tons of ice. see "Planet of Duplicates", William Lawrence Hamilton [1945]
  12. Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski [Harper & Row, 1976] ISBN 0-06-010952-1Anthology of FTL fiction and nonfiction; specific stories are in the list below of short fiction.
  13. Faster than Light: Super-luminal Loopholes in Physics, Dr. Nick Herbert [Plume Books, 1988]nonfiction
  14. Future Magic: How Today's Science Fiction Will Become Tomorrow's Reality, Dr.Robert Forward [Avon Books, 1988]nonfiction, strongly recommended
  15. Moving Mars, Greg Bearrewrite the parameters that describe an object in the "operating system" of the universe and, among other things, you can change your spacial coordinates and teleport to the destination
Short Fiction About FTL (Faster-Than-Light) Travel:
  1. "The Moth", Ross Rocklynne (Pseudonym of Ross Louis Rocklin, 1913-1988) [1939]"Reverse contraction" shrinks a spaceship by reducing the size of electron orbits, because "if you decrease the length of a ship to zero, it automatically assumes the speed of light." To quantum leap to any speed instananeously (with no acceleration), "you just shorten its length commensurate with the speed you want."
  2. "Homo Sol", Isaac Asimov [Astounding, Sep 1940; The Omnibus of Science Fiction, ed. Groff Conklin, Chatham River, 1986] when humans invent FTL and send a spaceship to Alpha Centauri to settle the 5th planet, our civilization is invited to join the galactic federation. The advanced races are fascinated that we've outdone their technology, with an improvement of "hyperatomic" drive. Humans modify various peaceful alien technologies into deadly weapons.
  3. "The Door", Oliver Saari [Astoiunding, Nov 1941]an alien gateway is disovered in a ruined city in the Sahara. The protagonist steps through, and is instantly on the ground of a planet in a binary star system. The emphasis is on the discover, not the mechanism or implications.
  4. "Gleeps", P. Schuyler Miller [1943]"warpships" have FTL for travel between stars, and possibly between universes.
  5. "Redevelopment", Wesley Long [1944]spaceship makes FTL trip to and from Sirius in 6 months flat, by means of "alphons" (some sort of particles) plus "gravitic generators", the combination being knows as the "superdrive."
  6. "Star Base X", Robert Moore Williams [1944]alien "Ahrneds" refuse to divulge the secret of FTL to humans, because our warlike nature would endanger the civilized galaxy.
  7. "Nomad", Wesley Long [1944]aliens already have FTL, but we don't
  8. "First Contact", Murray Leinster [Astounding, Nov 1941; 1945; First Contact: The Essential Murray Leinster, NESFA Press, 1998] the spaceship flies at "speeds incredible multiples of the speed of light", and is on a mission to get close-up photographs of a supernova, until it accidently encounters an alien spaceship.
  9. "Adaptor" and "Ethical Equations", Murray Leinster [Astounding, June 1945; First Contact: The Essential Murray Leinster, NESFA Press, 1998]the "space constant adaptor" allows near-light-speed travel.
  10. "Paradoxical Escape", Isaac Asimov [Astounding, Aug 1945]everything we know about physics, astronomy, and "space warp theory" is input to a mechanical computer. The "Brain" invents FTL, but it would be fatal to humans. Other computers (robots) had also discovered this, but Asimov's First Law of Robotics prohibited them from to telling this to humans, as that would harm them. They burned out, rather than pass on the dangerous secret.
  11. "Planet of Duplicates", William Lawrence Hamilton [1945]FTL is not quite possible, but interstellar flight is powered by tapping into the "exhalations of matter and energy from all the stars in the Milky Way" see Clarke's The Sonmgs of Distant Earth [1986]
  12. "Special Delivery, George O. Smith [1945]de facto FTL by matter transmission, carefully described as destructively scanning matter atom-by-atom, beaming the resulting energy and information to a second matter transmitter, and using raw materials in a "matter bank" to achieve atom-by-aton re-creation of the original
  13. "The Mixed Men", A.E. van Vogt [1945]de facto FTL by matter transmission, where Earth the center of an empire of three billion worlds, with "ultrawave" radio that is FTL (instantaneous transmission). People can travel either by electronic image transmission plus reconstruction from organic material the the destination, or by converting one's body into a flow of electrons sent through space and somehow reconstructed at the destination.
  14. The Canal Builders", Robert Abernathy [1945]de facto FTL by matter transmission, but an iconoclastic Earthman ignores this technology and flies to Mars by old-fashioned spaceship. It takes him two weeks to get there. He finds the ruins of an ancient city where a modern human city should be. He has discovered that "interspace" teleportation is also time travel. The rocket took him to Mars in "now plus two weeks", while matter transmission takes most people to Mars "now minus 2000 years" -- the ruins were built by humans two millennia ago...
  15. "Pattern for Conquest", George O. Smith [1946]the "superdrive" gets spaceships to nearly the speed of light, without explanation. This story also boasts the "tractor" and "pressor" beams which can "tear the guts out" of enemy ships, based on the "space constant adaptor" (see Murray Leinster's "Adaptor" and "Ethical Equations")
  16. "The Vanishing Spaceman", Alexander Blade [1947]de facto FTL by matter transmission
  17. "Meddler's Moon", George O. Smith [1947]the "Hedgerly Effect" relates gravity to magnetism, enabling electromagnetic control of gravity fields. By making the mass of a spaceship extremely small, it takes very little power to accelerate to near-light speeds -- but not quite to FTL.
  18. "The World Beyond", Guy Archette [1947]"Everything is made up of atoms, and there are spaces within the atom fully as vast as those between the planets of the solar system. The spaces... may be occupied by the components of a hundred other atoms, each possessing a different vibration rate, and each vibration rate constitues another world."
  19. "Starship from Venus", Rog Phillips [1948]Alien spacship from Venus lands on Earth, where we reverse-engineer it. Apparently, protons and electrons have "opposite intertia", so that shooting electrons from the nose of the spaceship and, simultaneously, shooting protons out its tail, the spaceship (for unclear reasons) moves forward at 1/3 the speed of light.
  20. "Rendezvous in Space", Guy Archett [1949]aliens fly their spaceship to outside the orbit of Saturn, but refuse to divulge the secret of FTL to humans, because our warlike nature would endanger the civilized galaxy.
  21. "The Eyes are Watching", Walt Sheldon [1950]an experimental hydrogen-drive FTL spaceship is sent beyond the speed of light, as nobody knows what might happen...
  22. "I'm a Stranger Here Myself", John Bridger [1950]FTL technology is based on "multi-phase travel", a trick we've learned from advanced aliens who know how to turn matter into anti-matter ("contra-terrene matter"). Somehow, this makes the spaceship suddenly able to exceed the speed of light.
  23. "Nor Iron Bars", James Blish [Infinity, Nov 1957]the "Haertel Overdrive" gave the spaceship "Flyway II" negative mass, upon which the ship and crew left ordinary space and appeared inside an atom, allowing them to land on and explore an electron. The crew also experienced telepathy. Indeed, imaginary rest mass is associated with the FTL of tachyons.
  24. "Lambda I", Colin Kapp [New Worlds, Dec 1962]in "Tau-space", achieved by changing the vibrations of a craft (plus crew and cargo), the craft can pass through solid matter, and travel straight through the center of the earth. On arrival, it must be "kicked" back into the proper vibrational state. Intense emotional/psychic experiences can cause problems, including the irreversable "omega" vibrations.
  25. "Mission to Universe", Gordon Dickson [1965]the technology of "Phase Shifting" expoits a quantum mechanical loophole in Relativity, providing shortcuts to the destination, a kind of spacewarp that results in de facto FTL
  26. "Door to Anywhere", Poul Anderson [1966]"Jumpgate" FTL technology is based on a version of Hoyle's Steady State cosmology, allowing short-cuts through space, de facto FTL
  27. "The Sins of our Fathers", Stanley Schmidt [1976]so-called "paratachyonic drive" can accelerate a spaceship, with little energy expenditure, to FTL, yet the same "Rao-Chang Drive" makes it prohibitively difficult to travel slightly slower than, or slightly faster than, the speed of light. It was discovered accidently, and nobody understands how it works. The Physics community prefers to ignore the mystery, rather than overhaul their theoretical paradigm.
  28. "Rogue Ship", A.E. van Vogt [19??]the spaceship "Hope of Man" is accelerated to nearly the speed of light, to take advantage of time dilation. The craft ejected fuel at nearly light speed, which accelerated the ship, so the ship gained mass according to Einstein, and theis (by admittedly "strange physics") allowed "...a thimble of mass could give almost infinite reaction power." Something went wrong, however, and the spaceship took decades to reach its destination. There is also the spurious claim that, at light speed, mass becomes infinite (true) but the volume of a particle becomes zero (false) so that matter is no longer bound to the laws of inertia.
  29. "Introduction: Dreaming Again", nonfiction by Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976]
  30. "Epigraph" [from "The Science in Science Fiction"], James Blish, excerpted from [Vector, Summer 1975]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976]
  31. "The Ultimate Speed Limit", Isaac Asimov [Saturday Review of Literature, 8 July 1972]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] non-fiction article
  32. "Possible, That's All!", Arthur C. Clarke [Fantasy & Science Fiction, Oct 1968]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] non-fiction article
  33. "The Limiting Velocity of Orthodoxy", Keith Laumer [Galaxy, Dec 1970]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] non-fiction article
  34. "But What If We Tried It?", Ben Bova [first printing?]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] non-fiction article
  35. "Sun Up", A.A. Jackson IV & Howard Waldrop [first printing?]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] short story
  36. "Dialogue", Poul Anderson [first printing?]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] novella
  37. "Phoenix Without Ashes", Harlan Ellison, illustrated by Tim Kirk; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976]
  38. "The Event Horizon", Ian Watson [first printing?]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] novella
  39. "Nor the Many-Colored Fires of a Star Ring", George R. R. Martin [first printing?]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] novella
  40. "Dead in Irons", Chelsea Quinn Yarbro [first printing?]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] novella
  41. "Seascape", Gregory Benford [first printing?]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] novella
  42. "Fast Friend", George R. R. Martin [first printing?]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] novella
  43. "Hyperspace", Dick Allen [Edge, Fall 1973]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] poem
  44. "Afterword: Our Many Roads to the Stars", Poul Anderson [Galaxy, Sep 1975]; [in: Faster than Light, ed. Jack M. Dann & George Zebrowski, Harper & Row, 1976] non-fiction article
  45. xxx
The above lists draw heavily from the online essay "Faster Than Light" by Sten Odenwald: "Faster Than Light" "There was a young lady named Bright whose speed was much faster than light she set out one day in a Relative way and returned on the previous night." -- A. H. Reginald Buller [Punch, 19 Dec 1912] Nonfiction and References on FTL:
  1. Star Drives in Science Fiction: A Catalog by Dr. Geoffrey A. Landis7 pages of classification of types of FTL in fiction
  2. "Warp Drives: Fact and Fiction by Ken Jones, Jr.related very well to Star Trek
  3. Science Fiction Writers Resource: FTL Useful link list includes the following 9 links:
  4. NASA Goes FTL - Part 1: Wormhole Physics, from John Cramer
  5. NASA Goes FTL - Part 2: Cracks in nature's Armour, from John Cramer
  6. The Alcubierre Drive, from John Cramer
  7. Why FTL Implies Time Travel - dueling with tachyon pistols, by Wayne Throop
  8. John Cramer's Articles from Analog (including FTL, quantum gravity, etc.)
  9. Relativity and FTL FAQ
  10. Catalog of Star Drives in Science Fiction
  11. Superluminal Motion: Fact or Fiction?
  12. "Faster Than Light" forum, conducted by Dr. Geoffrey A. Landis
RETURN to the top of the IF YOU LIKE THIS PAGE

FEMINIST:

science fiction and fantasy of, by, or for women When Science Fiction was young, there were so few women authors being published that many of them adopted male -- or at least neutral -- pseudonyms. Catherine Lucille Moore, for examnple, wrote as "C. L. Moore" Women with Male or Neutral Pseudonyms. Those days, thankfully, are long gone. Many of today's greatest writers of science fiction and fantasy are women -- Octavia Butler, C. J. Cherryh, Tanith Lee, Ursula K. Le Guin, Elizabeth Lynn, Andre Norton, Joanna Russ, Pamela Sargent, Josephine Saxton, Kate Wilhelm.... The genre has been revitalized, and boasts a significant Feminist subgenre. Susan Wood and Jessica Amanda Salmonson compiled the following list of AMAZON HEROIC FANTASY:
  1. Marion Zimmer Bradley's "The Shattered Chain" [Daw: 1975]
  2. Vera Chapman's "The King's Damosel" [1976; Avon: 1978]
  3. Suzy McKee Charnas's "Motherlines" [Berkeley: 1978]
  4. C. J. Cherryh's "Gate of Ivrel" [Daw: 1976]
  5. C. J. Cherryh's "Well of Shiuan" [Daw: 1978]
  6. Jo Clayton's the "Diadem" series [Daw]
  7. Ansen Dibell's "Pursuit of the Screamer" [Daw: 1978]
  8. Diane Duane's "The Door Into Fire" [Dell: 1979]
  9. John Russell Fearn's "Conquest of the Amazon" [1949; Futura: 1976]
  10. Janrae Frank's "The Ruined Tower" chapbook illustrated by Mary Bohdanowicz [Atalanta Press: 1979]
  11. Sally Gearheart's "The Wanderground" [Persephone: 1978]
  12. Robert E. Howard's "The Sword Woman" [Zebra: 1979]
  13. Tanith Lee's "The Birthgrave" [Daw: 1975]
  14. Tanith Lee's "Night's Master" [Daw: 1978]
  15. Richard Lupoff's "Sword of the Demon" [Harper & Row: 1977]
  16. Elizabeth Lynn's "The Northern Girl" [Berkeley: 1979]
  17. Elizabeth Lynn's "The Dancers of Arun" [Berkeley: 1980?]
  18. C. L. Moore's "Black God'd Shadow", the collected Jirel of Joiry stories from the 1930s, illustrated in this edition by Alicia Austin [Donald A. Grant: 1977]
  19. T. J. Morgan's "Dark Tide" chapbook illustrated by Theresa Troise-Heidel [Atalanta Press: 1979]
  20. Andre Norton's the "Witch World" series
  21. Doris Piserchia's "Star Rider" [Bantam: 1974]
  22. Doris Piserchia's "Earthchild" [Daw: 1977]
  23. Doris Piserchia's "Spaceling" [Daw: 1979]
  24. Joanna Russ' "Alyx" [Gregg Press: 1977]
  25. Joanna Russ' "Kittitiny, a Tale of Magic" [Daughters: 1978]
  26. Pamela Sargent's [ed] "The New Women of Wonder", especially the stories by Emswiller, Reed, and Russ [Vintage: 1978]
  27. John Varley's "Titan" [Berkeley: 1979]and its two sequels
  28. Joan Vinge's "Snow Queen" [Dell: 1979]
  29. Stanley G. Weinbaum's "The Red Peri" [Fantasy Press: 1952]
  30. Monique Wittig's "Les Guerillieres" [1969; Avon: 1973]
Susan Wood and Jessica Amanda Salmonson compiled the following list of non-fiction resources on the theme of "AMAZONS" and science fiction:
  1. Elise Boulding: "The Underside of History: A View of Women through TIME" [Westview Press, 1976]
  2. Helen Diner: "Mothers and Amazons" [New York: Doubleday 1930; Anchor, 1973]
  3. Jane Cannary Hickok: "Calamity Jane's Letters to her Daughter" [Shameless Hussy Press, 1976]
  4. Nancy Myron & Charlotte Bunch: "Women Remembered" [Diana Press, 1974]
  5. Julia O'Faolain & Lauro Martines [eds]: "Not In God's Image: Women in History from the Greeks to the Victorians" [New York: Harper & Row, 1973]
  6. Sarah Pomeray: "Goddesses, Whores, Wives and Slaves: Women in Classical Antiquity" [Los Angeles: Shocken, 1975]
  7. Rayna R. Reiter: "Towards an Anthropology of Women" [Monthly Review Press, 1975]
  8. Michelle Zimbalist Rosaldo & Louise Lamphere: "Women, Culture, and Society" [Stanford University Press, 1974]
  9. Joanna Russ: "What Can a Heroine Do" and "The Image of Women in Science Fiction", in Susan Koppelman [ed]: "Images of Women in Fiction: Feminist Perspectives" [Ohio University Press, 1972
  10. Joanna Russ: "Amor Vincit Feminam: The Battle of the Sexes in Science Fiction" [Indiana University Press: Science Fiction Studies, 1978]
  11. Jessica Amanda Salmonson: "The Golden Age of Sexism" Atalanta Press: Windhaven #6, 1979]
  12. Charles Seltman: "Women in Antiquity" [London: Thames and Hudson, 1956]
  13. Donald Sobol: "The Amazons of Greek Mythology" [A. S. Barnes, 1972]
  14. Merlin Stone: "When God Was a Woman" [New York: Dial Press, 1978]
Women with Male or Neutral Pseudonyms. Maxim Jakubowski & Malcolm Edwards ["The SF Book of Lists", New York: Berkley Books, 1983, pp.228-229] give a list of 31 women Science Fiction authors who use male psuedonyms or neutral initials. Selected and adapted from that listing, Here are some of those "Women in Disguise":
  1. "Paul Ash" = Pauline Ashwell
  2. "C. M. Carmichael" = Christine M. Carmichael, Ph.D.
  3. "Jayge Carr" = Margery Krueger
  4. "Jack Danvers" = Camille Caselyr
  5. "C. J. Cherryh" = Caroline Janice Cherry
  6. "D. C. Fontana" = Dorothy C. Fontanamajor screenwriter (Star Trek)
  7. "J. O. Jeppson" = Janet O. Jeppson = Janet Jeppson Asimov
  8. "A. M. Lightner" = Alice Hopf
  9. "C. L. Moore" = Catherine Lucille Moore
  10. "Andre Norton" = "Andrew North" = Alice Mary Norton
  11. "Kit Reed" = Lillian Craig Reed
  12. "James Tiptree, Jr." = Alice Sheldon
  13. "S. J. Van Scyoc" = Sydney Joyce Van Scyoc
  14. "M. K. Wren" = Martha Kaye Renfroe
And see also: Nan Bowman Albinski: Women's Utopias in Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Fiction [Routledge, 1988] Two important web sites about Feminist Science Fiction are: Feminist Science Fiction Guide to Feminist Science Fiction Resources Other interesting feminist science fiction titles:
  1. Marge Piercy's "He, She, and It" [Fawcett, 1991]Feminist Cyberpunk
  2. Sharon Yntema's "More than 100 Woman Science Fiction Writers: An Annotated Bibliography" [The Crossing Press, 1988] ISBN 0-89594-449-9, .95, trade paperback
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HARD SCIENCE FICTION:

based on real science & engineering The definition of "Hard Science Fiction" is important. The analogy is between the "Hard Sciences" such as Astronomy, Physics, and Chemistry, ruled by mathematics and repeatable laboratory experiment on the one hand, and "Soft Sciences" -- fuzzy subjective fields such as Psychology, Sociology, and Anthropology where no two humans are identical the way two electrons are, and yet we still try to apply empirical methods. It is partly a matter of attitude. The Bible tells us: "Who seeks hard things, to him is the way hard." Indeed, the disciplined author who attempts to capture the rigor of Hard Science in fiction, in terms of plausible setting and mechanism, and in the skeptical yet pragmaticly quantitative attitude of the scientist, the writing is itself quite difficult to achieve. Many writers and critics point to one specific novel as being the very model of this genre:

Clement's "Mission of Gravity"

"Mission of Gravity" [Mission of Gravity, Hal Clement, Garden City NJ: Doubleday, 1954] has one of the most vividly rendered alien planets with ETs ever written. Set on the planet Mesklin, where gravity is some 300 times as intense as Earth at the poles, and yet only 3 times Earth-strength at the equator (due to centrifugal force on the very-rapidly spinning planet), the methane-chemistry ETs (Mesklinites) explore weird parts of their world while being in constant radio communication with human beings in orbit whom they have already met face-to-face aboard the human spaceship. This is one of the first great "Hard Science Fiction" novels, dealing with meticulously accurate astronomy, chemistry, and physics, and also clearly presents us with intriguing aliens. Author Hal Clement (pseudonym for the high school chemistry teacher Harry Stubbs) even defines "Hard science fiction" for us in a related essay ["Hard Sciences and Tough Technologies", Hal Clement, in The Craft of Science Fiction, ed. Reginald Bretnor, New York: Harper & Row, 1976, p.51]: "Hard" science fiction is a recognizable field within a field; it is enjoyed largely by people who take their own scientific knowledge seriously; writing it therefore demands on the part of the author a fair amount of scientific knowledge and ability (partially replaceable by good research facilities and informed friends whose brains can be picked); and the worst mistake a hard science fiction writer can make, aside from failing to tell an entertaining story, is to write something that makes him look ignorant. He can disagree with accepted science, but he'd better have an impressive-sounding excuse. Other strong novels in this field include:
  1. "A Planet Named Cleopatra", by Poul Anderson [1974]
"The Ascent of Wonder: The Evolution of Hard SF", edited by David G. Hartwell & Kathryn Cramer (with an Introduction by Gregory Benford) [New York: Tor Books, 1994] is, to date, the definitive 1000-page anthology of "Hard Science Fiction" stories. Some might quibble about what was improperly let in (J. G. Ballard?) or who was unfairly left out. But the fine essays (by Gregory Benford, David G. Hartwell, and Kathryn Cramer), the introductory mini-essays at the start of each story, and the stories themselves are, for the most part, at the core of this sub-genre. The stories in this anthology, in alphabetical order by last name of author [magazines and dates added by Magic Dragon Multimedia], are:
  1. Poul Anderson's "Kyrie"
  2. Isaac Asimov's "The Last Question" [Science Fiction Quarterly, Nov 1956]
  3. Isaac Asimov's "The Life and Times of Multivac"
  4. Isaac Asimov's "Waterclap"
  5. J. G. Ballard's "Cage of Sand" [New Worlds, June 1962]
  6. J. G. Ballard's "Prima Belladonna" [Science Fantasy, Dec 1956]
  7. Greg Bear's "Tangents"
  8. Gregory Benford's "Exposures"
  9. Gregory Benford's "Relativistic Effects"
  10. Alfred Bester's "The Pi Man" [F&SF, Oct 1959]
  11. James Blish's "Beep" [Galaxy, Feb 1954]
  12. James Blish's "Surface Tension" [Galaxy, Aug 1952]
  13. Miles J. Breuer's "The Hungry Guinea Pig" [Amazing, Oct 1961]
  14. David Brin's "What Continues, What Fails..."
  15. Edward Bryant's "giANTS"
  16. John W