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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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Kirkby, John

(circa 1705-1754) UK clergyman and author whose two main works were plagiarized and who may also have written as Pythagorolunister (see Checklist below for title). He substantially lifted his A New English Grammar (1746) from New Grammar (1745) by Anne Fisher (1719-1778), and is not therefore responsible for the eighteenth-century invention of the convention that "he" can stand for he, or she, or it. Fisher's Grammar remained popular; Kirkby's soon went out of print. / Journey to the World ...

Traill, H D

(1842-1900) UK lawyer, journalist and author, of most interest for his Satires, early examples – like The Israelitish Question: And the Comments of the Canaan Journals Thereon (1876 chap) anonymous tending to spoof contemporary politics through elaborate parodies and anachronisms. The New Lucian: Being a Series of Dialogues of the Dead (coll of linked stories 1884) makes its satirical points through a sustained reworking of the work by Lucian. The long Near Future title story of the tales ...

Williams, Francis T Perry

(?   -    ) US actor (active during the 1980s) and author whose sf novel, Pollen and the Ring of Harmony (2008; rev 2009), describes the arrival on Earth of an Alien who attempts to change the minds of Homo sapiens and cure them of the delusion that Climate Change is not destroying their habitat. An Asteroid is also due to impact the planet. Tragically his ring, which brings only good, is stolen by the American government. The plot revolves around attempts to ...

Schulman, J Neil

(1953-2019) US author whose books were very influential in the Libertarian-SF movement. Alongside Night (1979), which is set in a ruinously Decadent New York, describes the salvation of a future America – whose economy has been destroyed by government intervention in the free market: a singularly bad guess in post-2008 hindsight – by a hard-cash underground economy evolved from today's black market (see Economics; Politics). The political message is conveyed in a reasonably ...

Thomson, David

(1941-    ) UK author, in the US from 1975; best known for his nonfiction studies of film, including the well-known A Biographical Dictionary of the Cinema (1975), which has been expanded several times; he has also written critical works on film noir, including America in the Dark: Hollywood and the Gift of Unreality (1977) and Beneath Mulholland: Thoughts on Hollywood and Its Ghosts (1997). A similar focus is reflected in his fiction. His three novels of some sf interest ...

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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