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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.

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Generation Starships

For writers unwilling to power their Starships with Faster-than-Light drives or to make use of a Relativistic time contraction, there is a real problem in sending ships between the stars: the length of the voyage, which would normally span many human lifetimes. The usual answers are to put the crew into Suspended Animation, as in James White's The Dream Millennium (1974), to send germ cells only, as in Kurt Vonnegut Jr's "The Big Space Fuck" (in Again, Dangerous Visions, anth 1972, ed Harlan ...

Carr, John Dickson

(1906-1977) US author, mostly resident until 1948 in the UK, where many of his famous early detective novels, such as The Three Coffins (1935; vt The Hollow Man 1935), Death-Watch (1935) and The Ten Teacups (1937; vt The Peacock Feather Murders 1937) as by Carter Dickson, and others, are evocatively set. (However, some of his noteworthy early borderline-fantasy detections, such as The Waxworks Murder [1932; vt The Corpse in the Waxworks 1932 US], take place in France.) Early works such as It ...

Farrow, G E

(1862-1919) UK author whose work as been thought of as being almost exclusively of Fantasy for children, often showing the direct influence of Lewis Carroll. None of his books are easily understood as sf, though two of his earlier tales involve journeys in space: in The Missing Prince (1896), a Pierrot character descends to Earth from the Moon; and the protagonists of The Mandarin's Kite; Or, Little Tsu-Foo and Another Boy (1900) travel to the world of Pars in a solar system where the planets ...

Raleigh, H M

(1898-1969) UK, in active service during World War One; The Machinations of Dr Grue (1938) is a Scientific Romance in which a Mad Scientist's Invention, a formula capable of dissolving all matter, almost dissolves all matter at the hands of Dr Grue. [JC]

Lasser, David

(1902-1996) US editor and author who worked in various capacities for a number of Hugo Gernsback journals, most prominently as Managing Editor of Air Wonder Stories in 1930, of Amazing Detective Tales in 1930 (see Scientific Detective Monthly), of Wonder Stories Quarterly between 1930 and 1933, and of Wonder Stories from 1930 to 1933. He was notable for his attempts to shift Genre SF away from the crude Space Opera then prevalent; but was fired in 1933 by Gernsback because of his socialism. His ...

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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