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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 17 January 2022
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Virtuosity

Film (1995). Paramount Pictures presents a Gary Lucchesi production. Directed by Brett Leonard. Written by Eric Bernt. Cast includes Russell Crowe, Kelly Lynch and Denzel Washington. 102 minutes. Colour. / Virtuosity combines Hollywood staple themes of Virtual Reality and the indestructible killer, but at its heart is a traditional thriller of cop versus criminal. SID 6.7 (Crowe) is a debonair, if psychotic Artificial Intelligence (see AI), SID being an acronym for "Sadistic, Intelligent, ...

England, James

(1931-2003) UK author and fan, actively involved in the British Science Fiction Association with letters and reviews as Jim England from 1963 to the late 1990s. His routine sf novel for Robert Hale Limited is The Measured Caverns (1978). The adolescent hero is one of many children raised in Underground isolation within a kind of Pocket Universe called Sanctuary; he briefly tours "Outside", which has been described to him as terrifyingly warped by Future War but proves to be contemporary New ...

Hawthorne, Nathaniel

(1804-1864) US author, father of Julian Hawthorne, whose work in the literatures of the fantastic – a surprisingly high proportion of his oeuvre – concentrates supernatural fiction, much of this material being rationalized, however, in sf terms. One of the formative figures in US literature, Hawthorne was intrigued throughout his writing career by themes that would become common to sf. His extensive notebooks outline dozens of projected sf works – some of which he was able to ...

Brundage, Margaret

(1900-1976) US illustrator, resident in Chicago. Best-known for her erotic covers for Weird Tales, Brundage was apparently the first woman artist to work in the sf/Fantasy field, and the first of either sex whose covers for these magazines featured nudes. Her female subjects (see Women in SF) are generally described as damsels in distress; however, as they posed provocatively wearing little or no clothing, they did not always seem particularly distressed by their occult surroundings, and ...

Life on Other Worlds

Early interplanetary travellers invariably discovered worlds which were markedly akin to Earth. Without a theory of Evolution for a guide, let alone any but the most primitive awareness of Ecology, the imaginative creation of other-worldly life was inevitably a haphazard and arbitrary process. One notable exception is Johannes Kepler's attempt to imagine lunar life in the last pages of Somnium (1634). There is little in most other pre-twentieth-century accounts to distinguish other worlds from ...

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 and one Semiprozine Hugo for his self-produced news magazine, Ansible (which see). His one ...



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