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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 27 June 2022
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Evolution

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 La découverte Australe par un homme volant ["The ...

Wolfe, Gary K

(1946-    ) US academic and author, associated with Roosevelt University in Chicago since 1971; as Dean of University College between 1981 and 1990; married to Dede Weil from 1997 until her death in 2000. Some of his earlier essays, like "The Known and the Unknown: Structure and Image in Science Fiction" (in Many Futures, Many Worlds, anth 1977, ed Thomas B Clareson), prefigured the typology of sf he presented in full in his most significant scholarly work, The Known and the ...

Flynn, Michael F

(1947-    ) US author who began publishing sf with "Slan Libh" in Analog in 1984, and who soon became identified as one of the most sophisticated and stylistically acute 1980s Analog regulars, some of his work appearing as by Rowland Shew; he was soon recognized as a central modern creator of Hard SF; much of this work is assembled in The Forest of Time and Other Stories (coll 1997). Flynn's first novel, In the Country of the Blind (1990), is an Alternate-History thriller ...

Dixie, Florence

(1855-1905) UK traveller, journalist (the first female war correspondent in the English language) and author whose nonfiction Across Patagonia: A Lady Combs the Pampas (1880) – the only woman in her party, she was its dominant figure – captures something of her Feminist urgency. In Gloriana, or The Revolution of 1900 (1890) a woman disguised as a man is elected Prime Minister of the UK and, though unmasked, establishes full equality between the sexes; by 1999, a woman-ruled UK ...

Cyberpunk

Term used to describe a school of sf writing that developed and became popular during the 1980s. The word was almost certainly coined by Bruce Bethke in his story "Cyberpunk" (November 1983 Amazing), which had for some time before publication been circulating in manuscript. The term was picked up, either directly or indirectly, by writer and editor Gardner Dozois and used by him to characterize a literary movement whose main exponents, at first – in stories from about 1981-1982 onwards ...

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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