Entry updated 29 October 2021. Tagged: Author.
(? -? ) US author. In his eccentrically interesting The Auroraphone: A Romance (1890), messages from a sentient being on Saturn are received on the eponymous instrument, an Invention designed to pick up "sound-signs" from almost anywhere; life on Saturn is Utopian in many ways, although a Robot revolt flares up – one of the first of many in sf, the most famous being a similar revolt in Karel Čapek's R.U.R. (Rossum's Universal Robots): A Fantastic Melodrama (1920), though Cole's Robots are metal and Čapek's are in fact Androids. Although a superstitious Black servant – the racism here is perhaps even more defacing than normal for an American novel of this period – forces a stop to this communication from Saturn, a later messenger projects educational recordings, for the benefit of the enthralled terrestrial listeners, of famous events on Earth, including the Battle of Gettysburg. [PN/JC]
- The Auroraphone: A Romance (Chicago, Illinois: Charles H Kerr, 1890) [hb/]
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