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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 23 May 2022
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Oldham, June

(?   -    ) UK author of The Raven Waits (1979), a fantasy about Beowulf; and a Young Adult tale, Foundling (1995; vt Found 1996), set in a Near Future America where fears of Overpopulation have led to punitive controls over reproduction. The young protagonist, exiled to a countryside inhabited by Gothic figures of menace and occasional hope, establishes as expected a kind of family among her fellow rejects from a bad world. [JC]

Abre Los Ojos

Film (1997; vt Open Your Eyes). Directed by Alejandro Amenábar. Written by Amenábar & Mateo Gil. Cast includes Penélope Cruz, Chete Lera, Fele Martinez, Najwa Nimri and Eduardo Noriega. 117 minutes. Colour. / Playboy César's discarded girlfriend Nuria (Nimri) takes revenge by crashing their car, killing herself and leaves César (Noriega) facially disfigured; his unravelling life seems briefly repaired by his new love Sofía (Cruz) and a suddenly ...


Werewolves have featured in the literatures of the Western World from at least the time of Homer, but have not in any significant way contributed to the story of Proto SF, and in their ancient, mythological sense are not dealt with in this encyclopedia (but see further reading below). This class of Supernatural Creature – along with Vampires and other mythic Shapeshifters – is now endemic in the overlapping Fantasy subgenres of Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy [see The ...

Dr Cyclops

Film (1940). Paramount Pictures. Directed by Ernest B Schoedsack. Written by Tom Kilpatrick. Cast includes Thomas Coley, Albert Dekker, Paul Fix, Charles Halton, Victor Kilian, Janice Logan, Frank Reicher, Frank Yaconelli. Circa 75 minutes. Colour. / The closeness by date to World War Two is deceptive, as Dr Cyclops, filmed in late 1939 for April 1940 release, may be the last sf film of that era to remain entirely innocent of any premonitions of a darker world. Its eponymous Villain might ...

Richards, Lysander Salmon

(1835-1926) US author of Breaking Up; Or, the Birth, Development, and Death of the Earth and its Satellite in Story (1896), a title evoking the cosmological perspectives of an author like the then popular Camille Flammarion, and the epic history being unpacked is intermittently "narratized", to give sentient interest, the viewpoint character being a dead but observant Alien from another star who tracks the Evolution of matter and life on Earth and the Moon, life on the latter being terminated ...

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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