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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.

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Gurdjieff, G

(?1866-1949) Armenian philosopher of Greek descent, composer, mystic, teacher and author, in Russia proper (Armenia being a Russian territory) from 1912, in Turkey and mostly in France from 1920; his birth date is insecure, with 1872 and 1877 also being suggested. His doctrine of the Fourth Way – which seems essentially to apply "scientific" expressions of mystical intuitions with the aim of providing models of harmonious selfhood for his followers – deeply influenced figures like A ...

Otherside Picnic

Japanese animated tv series (2021). Based on the Light Novels by Iori Miyazawa (illustrated by shirakaba). Liden Films, Felix Film. Directed by Takuya Satō. Written by Takuya Satō. Voice cast includes Yumiri Hanamori, Rina Hidaka, Ai Kayano and Miyu Tomita. Twelve 24-minute episodes. Colour. / As the title suggests, this work is influenced by Arkady and Boris Strugatski's Roadside Picnic (1972; trans 1977). / Toriko Nishina (Kayano) is searching the Otherside, a Parallel World ...


As the City at the heart of the British Empire, London was long seen by UK speculative authors as bearing the brunt of whatever Disaster the future might bring. There are many proleptic post-imperial visions of London destroyed or depopulated, as in William Delisle Hay's The Doom of the Great City; Being the Narrative of a Survivor, Written A.D. 1942 (1880 chap), and other works discussed under Ruins and Futurity, this being perhaps the first tale to conflate the growing health crises caused by ...

Moxley, F Wright

(1889-1937) US lawyer and author whose interesting though somewhat overblown Satire, Red Snow (1930), tells of a snowlike precipitation, a Disaster which causes worldwide sterility in 1935, and of the subsequent social breakdown. The tale itself comprises an almost telegraphic Future History told through the experiences of one individual who survives everyone else on the planet. Finally, this Last Man alive seems to be rescued by what may be an enigmatic Alien but – as the vessel from the ...

Asakura Hisashi

Pseudonym of Zenji Ōtani (1930-2010), the Japanese translator of, among others, J G Ballard, Michael Crichton, Philip K Dick, Harry Harrison and Fritz Leiber. Graduating in Anglo-American studies from Osaka University, he initially worked in a textile company until 1966. A prolific translator for S-F Magazine, he was obliged to use several other pseudonyms, including Yuriko Sawa and Reiji Ōtani, for fear that multiple appearances by the same translator in a single issue would lead ...

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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