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Sullivan, Jas F

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

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(1852-1936) UK cartoonist and author; despite more than once being so identified, he is not the brother of UK illustrator Edmund J Sullivan (1869-1933). Much of his visual and written work consisted of Satirical takes on nineteenth century British mores, most famously in The British Working Man, by One Who Doesn't Believe in Him (graph coll 1878), which has no fantastic content. Belial's Burdens: Down with the McWhings (1896) is a killing Parody of The Sorrows of Satan (1895) by the impenetrably self-regarding Marie Corelli, which ends with the protagonist planning to construct a tropical Island at the North Pole. Most of his work of sf interest has been assembled in various miscellaneous volumes: The Flame-Flower and Other Stories (coll 1896) contains "The Island of Dr Menu", a novella of considerable interest which parodies H G Wells's The Island of Dr Moreau (1896). Volumes like So the World Goes (coll 1898), Here They Are! (coll 1899) and Here They Are Again! (coll 1899) contain several fantastications. Some of the tales assembled in Queer Side Stories (coll 1900) are of stronger interest: in "Impossibility: A Study of Reason and Science" (March 1892 Strand) two spirits discuss the creation of a planet; in "The End of War" (June 1892 Strand), similar (or identical) spirits discuss the end of War; and in "The N.P.M.C." (March 1893 Strand) the spirits discuss Overpopulation, bruiting the suggestion that the government solve the problem with mass poison. Sullivan retired in 1904, just as the world began to darken along lines he might well have been early to grasp. [JC]

James Frank Sullivan

born London: 31 October 1852

died Chertsey, Surrey: 5 May 1936

works (selected)



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