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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 24 January 2022
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Rhine, J B

(1895-1980) US botanist and early promoter – from a position at Duke University – of the nascent science or Pseudoscience of parapsychology, most famously through a series of tests designed to demonstrate the measurable existence, in terms of "abnormal" Psychology, of various forms of extrasensory perception (see ESP; Perception; Psi Powers; Telekinesis; Telepathy). His findings, later disputed for methodological flaws by numerous critics including Martin Gardner and John T Sladek, ...

Osondu, E C

(?   -    ) Nigerian author, in US from around 2005, most of his work being short fiction, and mostly nonfantastic. He is of sf interest for Alien Stories (coll 2021), where tales of Aliens, sometimes engaged in First Contact, resonate with the issues of colonialism and racism (see Afrofuturism, Imperialism; Race in SF) that have been a primary concern of throughout his career. [JC]

D'Ammassa, Don

(1946-    ) US critic and author who has until recently been best known over the past three decades or so for his very numerous reviews, in Science Fiction Chronicle and elsewhere; his work – usually couched in long-capsule form – is noted for its fairness and generosity, and for the extremely wide range of texts he has covered. His Encyclopedia of Science Fiction (2005), which clearly draws on this vast repertory in its coverage of about 500 authors, can be seen ...

Harpman, Jacqueline

(1929-2012) Belgian psychoanalyst and author, moderately prolific since the 1950. Of sf interest are Moi Qui N'ai Pas Connu Les Hommes (1995; trans Ros Schwartz as I Who Have Never Known Men 1997), depicts a Post-Holocaust Dystopia where women are kept in Underground cages; and Orlanda (1996; trans Ros Schwartz 1999), which plays with some sophistication on Virginia Woolf's Orlando: A Biography (1928). [JC]


There is a long sf tradition, often tinged with Satire, of speculation about future advertising. Rudyard Kipling's With the Night Mail (November 1905 McClure's; rev 1909 chap) includes sedately conventional ads for Airships and their trappings, supposedly from a magazine of the story's year 2000. More often, the latest Technology is subverted for advertising purposes: electric light, for example, is used to project slogans on to the night sky in Villiers de L'Isle-Adam's "Celestial Publicity" ...

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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