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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 20 June 2022
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von Neupauer, Josef

(1806-1902) Austrian politician and author whose sf novel, Österreich im Jahre 2020 ["Austria in the Year 2020"] (1893), describes Mr Forest's journey to Austria in 2020, guided by Julian West from Edward Bellamy's Looking Backward (1888). Austria, now a monarchical Utopia, is run on communist lines, with women's rights established to a degree (see Feminism); Vienna has been transformed into the kind of symmetrical City frequently encountered in narratives about designed worlds. A coercive ...

Snyder, Cecil III

(1948-    ) US author of The Hawks of Arcturus (1974), in which a lone Earthman defies the eponymous Aliens in their attempt to find the secrets of an ancient Galaxy-ruling race (see Forerunners). He should not be confused with his father, Cecil K Snyder Jr (1927-    ), also an author. [JC]

Near Future

Images of the near future in sf differ markedly from those of the Far Future in both content and attitude. The far future tends to be associated with notions of ultimate destiny, and is dominated by metaphors of senescence; its images display a world irrevocably transfigured. It is viewed from a detached viewpoint; the dominant mood is – paradoxically – one of nostalgia, because the far future, like the dead past, can be entered only imaginatively, and has meaning only in terms of ...


Videogame (1986). Nintendo. Designed by Gunpei Yokoi, Yoshio Sakamoto. Platforms: NES (1986); GBA (2005); Wii (2007). / Similarly to its contemporary Exile (1988), Metroid is a combination of platform and puzzle game (see Videogames), displayed from the side in two dimensions. As with many examples of the more recent action Adventure form, the solution of simple physical problems is an important aspect of the gameplay. A great deal of wide ranging exploration and potentially frustrating ...

Niemann, August

(1839-1919) German editor and author, usually on military matters, whose Future War novel, Der Weltkrieg – Deutsche Träume (1904; trans J H Freese as The Coming Conquest of England 1904), does not anticipate World War One very precisely, though the Near Future conflict envisioned is worldwide, with Britain losing in India and at home against an alliance that groups France, Germany and Russia into an irresistible force. Aetherio, eine Planetenfahrt ["Aetherio: A Trip to the Planets"] ...

Nicholls, Peter

(1939-2018) Australian editor and author, primarily a critic and historian of sf through his creation and editing of The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction [see below]; resident in the UK 1970-1988, in Australia from 1988; worked as an academic in English literature (1962-1968, 1971-1977), scripted television documentaries, was a Harkness Fellow in Film-making (1968-1970) in the USA, worked as a publisher's editor (1982-1983), often broadcast film and book reviews on BBC Radio from 1974 and ...

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