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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 27 June 2022
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Wardman, Gordon

(1947-    ) UK social worker, poet and author of political thrillers, the second of which, Reparations (1987), is set in a Near Future Dystopian northern England, where right-wing rules is beginning to create chaos; the protagonist is a worn-out revolutionary who returns to the fray for family reasons. The action is strenuous; but though some local success attends his efforts, there is little hope for betterment at the end of things. [JC]


Sf stories based on serious speculations about future means of transportation are greatly outnumbered by stories in which those means function as facilitating devices – i.e., as convenient ways of shifting characters into an alien environment. Inevitably, the same kinds of machines crop up in both categories of story because stories of the second kind borrow heavily from those of the first. Spaceships have been employed by sf writers almost exclusively as a literary device; few stories ...

Williamson, Michael Z

(1967-    ) UK-born soldier (now retired) and author, in Canada then USA from early adulthood, whose first novel, Freehold (2004), initiated the Grainne War sequence which was eventually joined by the Ripple Creek sequence beginning with Better To Beg Forgiveness ... (2007), both series and some shorter works eventually slotted into the Freehold Universe over-series. Williamson adhered subsequently in much of his work to the basic pattern adumbrated by Freehold itself: free ...


The charismatic, goddess-like female ruler – usually referred to as "She" or "She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed" – in the Ayesha sequence by H Rider Haggard, opening with She: A History of Adventure (October 1886-January 1887 The Graphic; cut 1886; full text 1887). Ayesha clearly combines aspects of Aphrodite and Isis, being imperious, ravishing and potentially Immortal; but vulgarized echoes can also be detected of the primal Greek goddess Kore, the Eleusinian Demeter/Persephone dyad whose ...

Yellow Peril

The popular Term, not only within sf circles, for military or economic expansionism by China and other Far Eastern nations (see Invasion; Politics) as seen through the distorting lens of Western Paranoia, and understandable in those terms as central to the language and fears expressed in Imperial Gothic in the years before World War One. It seems to have been coined – in German as "gelbe Gefahr" – by Kaiser Wilhelm II in 1895. Early US examples of this theme before it gained its ...

Robinson, Roger

(1943-    ) UK computer programmer, bibliographer and publisher, active in UK Fandom for many years. The Writings of Henry Kenneth Bulmer (1983 chap; rev 1984 chap) is an exhaustive Bibliography of one of the most prolific sf writers, and Who's Hugh?: An SF Reader's Guide to Pseudonyms (1987) is similarly exhaustive in its listing of Pseudonyms. Criticized at first for its failure to annotate its findings – so that, for instance, pseudonyms used for sf could not be ...

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