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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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Foster, W Bert

(1869-1929) US author who specialized in the Dime Novel and several of whose Western tales were made into silent films; his sf of most interest – like "At Land's End" (May-November 1901 Argosy), a Near Future tale in which the Arctic is explored by airplane; and "When Time Slipped a Cog" (January-May 1905 All-Story), which combines Timeslip and Amnesia – did not reach book form. The Lost Expedition (1905) is borderline sf. [MA/JC]

Butler, Joan

Pseudonym of Irish Writer Robert William Alexander (1905-1979), whose first story of genre interest was "The Grey Parrot" for The Happy Mag. in October 1927, and who published numerous adventure stories in the late 1920s under his own name. Though most of his sf was as by Butler, he did publish under his own name two sf novels, both clearly written in the humorous style he had established for his pseudonymous work, but conveying an underlying seriousness of intent. In Mariners' Rest (1943), a ...

Snedeker, Caroline Dale

(1871-1956) US author, initially of children's books, some of them depicting life in versions of New Harmony, the town of her birth being named after the communitarian Utopia New Harmony created by her grandfather Robert Owen (1771-1858). Seth Way: A Romance of the New Harmony Community (1917) is a fictionalized (and fantasticated) biography of an experimental Scientist and early resident of New Harmony, Indiana, which had been purchased by Owen in 1825 from an earlier utopian society. Her ...

Barnard, Keith

(?   -    ) UK author whose two sf novels combine horror tropes and Medicine; the particular focus in Embryo (1990) is made clear by its title, while The Betz Cell (1991) applies Near Future medical science to communicating with the dead. [JC]

Lost Worlds

This rubric covers Lost Races, lost Cities, lost lands and Islands: all the enclaves of mystery in a rapidly shrinking world that featured so largely in the sf of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. This subgenre was obviously a successor to the Fantastic Voyages of the eighteenth century and earlier, but there are important distinctions to be drawn. The earlier tales had belonged to a world which was still geographically "open"; at the time Jonathan Swift wrote Gulliver's ...

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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