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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 9 July 2024
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Irwin, Robert

(1946-2024) UK academic, mediaevalist, professional juggler (briefly) and author whose work in Arabian studies, of importance in itself, underpins the world envisioned in his first and most famous novel, The Arabian Nightmare (1983; rev 1987), which may be the definitive rendering of its central conceit: a mise en abyme-like dream narrative whose protagonist, upon seeming to awaken, only finds himself passing out of one story through a Portal into a deeper dream [for ...

Captain Blood

Videogame (1988; vt The Ark of Captain Blood in continental Europe). ERE Informatique. Designed by Philippe Ulrich, Didier Bouchon. Platforms: Amiga, Amstrad, AtariST, C64, DOS (1988); AppleII, Mac, Spectrum (1989). / The protagonist of Captain Blood is Bob Morlok, a computer game designer who somehow injects himself into the fictional universe of the game he is working on, apparently by virtue of his sheer creativity. There ...

Cassidy, James

Pseudonym of UK author Edith Mary Steane (1861-1942), who produced several Anthologies under her own name, and, as Cassidy, The Gift of Life (1897), featuring a substance known as "life-lymph" which, when patients are inoculated with it, seems vastly to increase their resistance to death (see Immortality). [JC]


There is, inevitably, an intimate connection between the development of evolutionary philosophy and the history of sf. In a culture without an evolutionary philosophy most of the kinds of fiction we categorize as sf could not develop. Like the idea of progress, evolutionary philosophy flourished in late eighteenth-century France, and it was first significantly represented in literature by Restif de la Bretonne's evolutionary fantasy ...

White, Robin A

(?   -    ) US author, usually of thrillers; The Flight from Winter's Shadow (1990) is a very Near Future Technothriller in which intrigues surrounding an advanced military aircraft threaten to bring an Ecological disaster, perhaps even nuclear winter. [JC]

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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