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Bainbridge, William Sims

Entry updated 12 September 2022. Tagged: Author, Critic.

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(1940-    ) US sociologist whose interest in the mapping of sf as a subculture and as a presentation of worldviews has distinguished his career, an early example, published within the frame of Genre SF, being "New Maps of Science Fiction" in Analog Yearbook (anth 1978) edited by Ben Bova; as commonly found in some academic disciplines, the essay was written in collaboration, in this case with Murray M Dalziel. Bainbridge's own studies of sf include The Spaceflight Revolution (1976), with a focus on space exploration; Dimensions of Science Fiction (1986), an attempt to quantitatively analyze those aspects of the field felt to be measurable, including frequencies and spread of certain writers' work and themes, all based on a tripartite division of modern sf into Hard SF, New Wave and Science Fantasy; Goals in Space: American Values and the Future of Technology (1991); God from the Machine: Artificial Intelligence Models of Religious Cognition (2006) (see AI; Religion); The Virtual Future (2011) (see Virtual Reality); eGods: Faith Versus Fantasy in Computer Gaming (2013) (see Videogames); and The Meaning and Value of Spaceflight: Public Perceptions (2015). [JC]

William Sims Bainbridge

born Bethel, Connecticut: 12 October 1940


nonfiction (selected)


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