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Welcome to the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, Fourth Edition. Some sample entries appear below. Click here for the Introduction; here for the masthead; here for Acknowledgments; here for the FAQ; here for advice on citations. Find entries via the search box above (more details here) or browse the menu categories in the grey bar at the top of this page.

Site updated on 4 December 2023
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Compton, D G

(1930-2023) UK author, born of parents who were both in the theatre; he increasingly lived in the USA after 1981. As Guy Compton, he published some unremarkable detective novels, beginning with Too Many Murderers (1962), and as by Frances Lynch produced some nonfantastic Gothics throughout his career; but soon turned to sf with tales almost always set in the Near Future, and anatomizing moral dilemmas within that arena: the future is very clearly ...

Slater, Philip

(1927-2013) US academic (who abandoned his career as a professor of sociology in 1971), actor, playwright and author who remains best known for such acute analyses of Western culture as The Pursuit of Loneliness (1970) and Earthwalk (1974). His How I Saved the World (1985), about nuclear Disaster, reiterates in spoof-thriller guise the lessons urged in his nonfiction; en passant he mocks conspiracy theories, occult ...

Star Wars: Episode VIII – The Last Jedi

Film (2017). Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures (see The Walt Disney Company) presents a Lucasfilm production in association with Ram Bergman Productions. Directed by Rian Johnson. Written by Johnson, based on characters created by George Lucas. Cast includes John Boyega, Gwendoline Christie, Anthony Daniels, Laura Dern, Adam Driver, Carrie Fisher, Domhnall Gleeson, Mark Hamill, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong'o, ...

Mars, Alastair

(1915-1985) Canadian-born soldier and author, in the UK from infancy, in the Navy from 1932; he became well known for the 1952 court martial that ended his military career (in the midst of a dispute regarding his penury at naval rates of pay, he had refused to report for duty); his last rank was lieutenant commander. After 1952, he published several novels that drew on his intimate knowledge of submarines at war Under the Sea (he had been commander of ...


Tokusatsu is a contraction of the Japanese term tokushu satsuei ["special photography"] and is the term for special effects used in live action film and Television. It is mainly associated with those sf, Fantasy and Horror productions that are dominated by special effects; thus there are many works in those genres not classifiable as Tokusatsu. / Strictly speaking, ...

Langford, David

(1953-    ) UK author, critic, editor, publisher and sf fan, in the latter capacity recipient of 21 Hugo awards for fan writing – some of the best of his several hundred pieces are assembled as Let's Hear It for the Deaf Man (coll 1992 chap US; much exp vt The Silence of the Langford 1996; exp 2015 ebook) as Dave Langford, edited by Ben Yalow – plus five Best Fanzine Hugos ...

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