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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 21 January 2022
Sponsor of the day: Martin Dorfer

Horror in SF

The often propounded notion that sf is a literature of rational, scientifically based extrapolation is at best misleading and in many instances false. Much sf is anti-science, for reasons partly historic and perhaps partly intrinsic: the relationship of Fantastika as a whole to the eighteenth-century Enlightenment was uneasy from the very first. The famous remark of the Spanish painter Goya (1746-1828) that the Sleep of Reason breeds Monsters is inarguable in its most obvious meaning: when ...

Du Bois, Theodora

(1890-1986) US playwright and author whose first short stories were published in 1920, but who is best known for her many detective novels, often on medical themes, and for several fantasies, including her first novel, The Devil's Spoon (1930), in which a young devil takes over a human being in order to fight against Satan's plans for the world [for Devils and Satan see The Encyclopedia of Fantasy under links below; see also Gods and Demons]; The Devil and Destiny (1948), another tale about ...

Dyalhis, Nictzin

(1873-1942) US chemist whose debut story was the nonfantastic "Who Keep the Desert Law" (20 October 1922 Adventure); he began to publish work of Pulp sf interest with "When the Green Star Waned" (April 1925 Weird Tales), an early and not particularly well-written Space Opera in which the humanoid inhabitants of Venhez (Venus) discover that Aerth or Earth (known to them as the Green Star) has suffered an Invasion of ravening amoeboid Monsters deployed by mind-controlling Lunarions from the dark ...

Chu, Wesley

(?   -    ) Taiwan-born actor and author, in US from an early age, whose Tao sequence, comprising The Lives of Tao (2013), The Deaths of Tao (2014) and The Rebirths of Tao (2015), combines Technothriller riffs with a knowledgeable rendering of a traditional sf topos: Forerunner Alien beings called the Quasing who crashland on Earth and Uplift the human race until our science and Technology are sophisticated enough to repair their ship. The protagonist, who ...

Quiroule, Pierre

Pseudonym of UK author Walter William Sayer (1892-1982), and also a House Name of the Sexton Blake Library, to which Sayer contributed under that name; it was also used by R Coutts Armour. As Quiroule, Sayer is also credited with The Painted Death (1935), a Lost Race tale featuring Amazons deep in the South American jungle. [JC]

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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