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Greenwood Press

Entry updated 12 September 2022. Tagged: Publisher.

US specialist publishing house founded in 1967, based in Westport, Connecticut, whose books were largely academic and sometimes bibliographical; it took a special interest in sf, and was one of the major academic publishers in this area. Among the commentaries on sf published by Greenwood Press are Martha A Bartter's The Way to Ground Zero: The Atomic Bomb in American Science Fiction (1988), Thomas D Clareson's Some Kind of Paradise: The Emergence of American Science Fiction (1986), Bud Foote's The Connecticut Yankee in the Twentieth Century: Travel to the Past in Science Fiction (1991), Donald M Hassler's Comic Tones in Science Fiction: The Art of Compromise with Nature (1982), John J Pierce's Foundations of Science Fiction: A Study in Imagination and Evolution (1987), Gary K Wolfe's Critical Terms for Science Fiction and Fantasy: A Glossary and Guide to Scholarship (1986) and many more. Numerous studies of individual sf authors appeared in Greenwood's Critical Companions to Popular Contemporary Writers series, the first of these being Anne McCaffrey: A Critical Companion (1996) by Robin Roberts.

Greenwood anthologies of critical essays on sf were edited by Michael R Collings, Thomas P Dunn and Richard D Erlich, Martin H Greenberg, Donald M Hassler, Robert E Myers, Donald E Palumbo, Robert Reilly, Carl B Yoke and others – many of these in the Greenwood Press Contributions to the Study of Science Fiction and Fantasy series, which ran from 1982 to 2005, and published 105 volumes. Some of the anthologies were selected from conference proceedings of the annual International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts. Other Greenwood Press books are the splendid Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Weird Fiction Magazines (1985) edited by Marshall B Tymn and Mike Ashley, and A Biographical Dictionary of Science Fiction and Fantasy Artists (1988) by Robert E Weinberg, both standard references. Greenwood Press has also published complete runs of many famous sf magazines (mostly Pulp magazines) in microfiche, including Amazing, Planet Stories and Startling Stories.

Greenwood continued to publish works of sf interest during the 1990s and into the twenty-first century, typically six to eight titles per year (peaking at thirteen in 1996) but falling off from 2003, a year in which no Greenwood book of genre relevance was released. Nevertheless, the first decade of the twentieth century saw two notable multi-volume references: Gary Westfahl's The Greenwood Encyclopedia of Science Fiction and Fantasy (2005 3vols) and Robin Anne Reid's Women in Science Fiction and Fantasy (2009 2vols). In 2008 Greenwood was acquired by another publishing company, ABC-CLIO (based in Santa Barbara, California); this new owner continues to release nonfiction (though not exclusively about sf or even about literature) under the Greenwood imprint, a more recent example of sf relevance being Science Fiction Literature through History (2021 2vols) by Gary Westfahl.

This long-running critical imprint should not be confused with the Greenwood Press based in Langley, Washington State, used by author Stephan A Schwartz for self-published novels since 2017. [PN/GW/DRL]

see also: SF in the Classroom.


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