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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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Stewart, Sean

Pseudonym of US author Michael Sean Irwin (1965-    ), in Canada from young adulthood but resident in the US again from 1995; much of his work has been fantasy, though his first novel, Passion Play (1992), which is sf, depicts a Near Future America governed by the fundamentalist religious right. The story is told by a female private eye in standard noir style, down to the sequence of interviews with suspects which make up the centre of the narrative; although there are fewer ...


Film (2019). Warner Bros Pictures in association with DC Films, Joint Effort, Bron Creative and Village Roadshow Pictures. Directed by Todd Phillips. Written by Phillips and Scott Silver. Cast includes Zazie Beetz, Frances Conroy, Brett Cullen, Robert De Niro and Joaquin Phoenix. 122 minutes. Colour. / This origin story for Batman's most famous nemesis (see Villains), which is technically nonfantastic, is included here for convenience. The film imagines the Joker when young as Arthur Fleck ...

Foster, M A

(1939-2020) US author, former data-systems analyst and sequentially a Russian linguist and ICBM launch-crew commander to the US Air Force; he was also a semiprofessional photographer. After some poetry, released privately as Shards from Byzantium (coll 1969 chap) and The Vaseline Dreams of Hundifer Jones (coll 1970 chap), he began to publish sf with the ambitious Ler trilogy about a race of Supermen created by Genetic Engineering whose social structure is built around a form of line marriage ...

Starzl, R F

(1899-1976) US journalist and author who between 1928 and 1934 had 24 stories published in the Pulp magazines, written primarily as a means of financing his family newspaper, the LeMars Globe-Post, of which he became the proprietor. Most of Starzl's stories are competently written but became increasingly formulaic, though he was especially good at creating different types of Monsters. His first story is his best remembered, "Out of the Sub-Universe" (Summer 1928 Amazing Stories Quarterly) where ...

Power Sources

We live in an age of imminent resources crisis, anxiously anticipating the depletion of fossil-fuel reserves even while we become reluctant to rely on Nuclear Energy because of the Pollution problems caused by radioactive wastes and the necessary expense of decommissioning obsolete, contaminated installations. New options rely either on discoveries not yet made – the development of nuclear-fusion reactors, or of more efficient ways to convert solar energy into electricity – or on a ...

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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