Welcome to the Third Edition of the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, edited by John Clute, David Langford, Peter Nicholls (emeritus) and Graham Sleight (managing). All the more than 17,600 entries are free to read online; a few samples appear below. Click here for the Introduction and more on the text; here for Frequently Asked Questions; here for Advice to Students on citations. Find entries via the search box above (more on searching here) or browse the menu categories to the right of the SFE logo. To see what links to the current entry and to identify contributors' initials, click the Incoming/Citation button at the top of the entry.


Tagged: Theme

A number of historical, fictional and mythical characters have acquired iconic status in sf. Most such figures from myth and Religion have their proper home in Fantasy, but nevertheless appear repeatedly in sf and Science Fantasy – not only Shaggy God Stories but subtler rationalizations or reworkings of legend. In this category are Adam and Eve, Christ, God and the Devil (see Gods and Demons), King Arthur, and the Wandering Jew. Through traditionally ghastly, a personified Death becomes sympathetic in Terry Pratchett's Discworld and Neil Gaiman's Sandman sequences; and likewise, with Science and Sorcery trappings, in Piers Anthony's On a Pale Horse (1983). Relevant fictional characters who...

Retro Hugo

Tagged: Award

Retrospective Hugo awards may be voted under certain circumstances to fill the perceived gap left by a past World SF Convention at which no Hugos were presented. Besides the voting of the usual Hugos for the previous year's sf, a Worldcon committee may optionally allow its members to choose Retro Hugos which might have been but were not presented at the Worldcon of 50, 75 or 100 years previously (more recently amended to any such span which is an exact multiple of 25). These awards have been presented six times: in 1996 for 1945 work, in 2001 for 1950 work, in 2004 for 1953 work, in 2014 for 1938 work, in 2016 for 1940 work and in 2018 for 1942 work. Since Hugo presentations have continued w...

Sheena, Queen of the Jungle

Tagged: Film | TV | Publication | Comics | Character

1. US Pulp Magazine. One issue, Spring 1951, published by Glen Kel Co; no editor named. Sheena – a sort of female Tarzan – was one of the few characters to make the transition from Comics to pulp magazines (rather than vice versa), having first appeared in Jumbo Comics in 1938. The solitary issue of Sheena, Queen of the Jungle contained three Sheena stories by James Anson Buck. The character was also featured in the pulp magazine Jungle Stories. [MJE/FHP] 2. US tv series (1955-1956). Nassour Studios, Inc. Based on the Comics character created by Will Eisner and S M "Jerry" Iger. Produced by Edward Nassour. Directors included Carl K Hittleman, Arthur Pierson. Writers included Eisner, Frank...

Gordon, Joan

Tagged: Author | Editor | Critic

(1947-    ) US editor and academic, currently a professor of English at Nassau Community College in New York, whose writing career began with Joe Haldeman (1980 chap), a serviceable introductory study of the work of Joe Haldeman. Her next book, Gene Wolfe (1986), comprises an early attempt to present the work – up to and including The Book of the New Sun – of perhaps the most difficult of all sf authors to attempt to understand; as he has with subsequent commentators, Gene Wolfe at times defeats Gordon's efforts to find sustainable routes into the labyrinth of his work.Her three critical Anthologies, all involving Veronica Hollinger, examine Gender issues and Feminism in general; their Edgin...

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