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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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Ollivant, Alfred

(1874-1927) UK author who had been a soldier; a riding accident left him crippled (badly for ten years), and – long before the outbreak of World War One – he turned to writing. He remains best-known for his first book, Bob, Son of Battle (1898), about a wise and subtle sheepdog; he is of sf interest for his last book, To-morrow: A Romance of the Future (1927), in which twenty-fourth century England has become a Utopia shaped according to the arts and crafts ethos of ...

Murphy, M K L

(?   -    ) US author whose gonzo spoof The Isle of Minimus (2016) comes close to sf-like turns of story, though the surreal disjointedness of the telling, which is oddly underlined by the fact that the entire text comprises a single sentence, generates a sense that the scenes presented may not be designed to be grasped literally. This reluctance to fix to the world the various story elements evoked – the titular Island of "dwarfs" in the English Channel ...

Salinger, Pierre

(1925-2004) US journalist – best known for his stint as John F Kennedy's press secretary from 1961 – briefly US Senator for California in 1964, and author. His very Near Future tale, On Instructions of My Government (1971), describes the consequences of the discovery of a Chinese Communist missile base in South America. [JC]

Binkley, Ric

(1921-1968) American artist. Little is known about this artist except that he began painting covers for books from Fantasy Press and Gnome Press in 1950, worked steadily for several years for those publishers and for Avalon Books, and then became inactive; he died at a relatively early age. Of the several Richard Binkleys found in genealogical databases, the one born in 1921 is almost certainly the artist since the records confirm a sister named Mary Betty Binkley (1917-2011) who is known to ...


In sf Terminology, this is typically a noun denoting a creature (usually intelligent) from beyond Terra; that is, from off Earth. When used as a noun, and occasionally in its adjectival mode, the word may be shortened to "et", "e-t" or "ET" (pronounced "eetee"). Of course the adjectival form need not imply life or consciousness – a meteorite, by definition, comes from extraterrestrial regions – but neither does it exclude them. One favourite Pseudoscience trope often deployed in sf ...

Clute, John

(1940-    ) Canadian critic, editor and author, in the UK from 1969; married to Judith Clute from 1964, partner of Elizabeth Hand since 1996. His first professional publication was the long sf-tinged poem "Carcajou Lament" (Winter 1960 [ie Autumn 1959] Triquarterly), though he only began publishing sf reviews in 1964 and sf proper with "A Man Must Die" in New Worlds for November 1966, where much of his earlier criticism also appeared. This criticism, despite some studiously ...

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