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Shippey, Tom

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

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Working name of Indian-born academic and editor Thomas A Shippey (1943-    ), in the UK from childhood; Professor of English Language and Medieval Literature at the University of Leeds 1979-1993; held the Walter J Ong Chair of Humanities at St Louis University 1993-2008. In essays and reviews, which he has been publishing since the mid-1970s, he takes a clear-headed orthodox view of the central figures of sf and fantasy; Fictional Space: Essays on Contemporary Science Fiction (coll 1991) assembles some of this work. The Road to Middle-Earth (1982) and J R R Tolkien: Author of the Century (2000) are studies of J R R Tolkien, the latter featuring a hilarious exposé of the inadequacies of academic critics when they attempt to explain away the author's astonishing success. Shippey also edited The Oxford Book of Science Fiction Stories (anth 1992), in the Introduction to which he espouses James Bradley's notion that sf is a literature whose central image is "the creator of artefacts" or Homo "fabril"; a second anthology, The Oxford Book of Fantasy Stories (anth 1994), was more carefully put together. Shippey cowrote the theme entries on Magic and History in SF in this encyclopedia. He has also written short sf under the pseudonym Tom Allen, and the Hammer and Cross sequence, beginning with The Hammer and the Cross (1993), all as by John Holm, with Harry Harrison, who see for details. He won an IAFA Award as Distinguished Guest Scholar in 1996. [JC]

see also: Relativity.

Thomas Alan Shippey

born Calcutta, India: 9 September 1943



Hammer and Cross


works as editor


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