Science fiction films, from the original Frankenstein and The Fly to Blade Runner and The Terminator, traditionally have been filled with aliens, spaceships, androids, cyborgs, and all sorts of robotic creatures along with their various creators. The popular appeal of these characters is undeniable, but what is the meaning of this generation of creatures? What is the relationship of mad scientist to subject, of human to android, of creature to creator?
Androids, Humanoids, and Other Folklore Monsters is a profound investigation of this popular cultural form. Starting his discussion with the possible source of these creatures, anthropologist and writer Per Schelde identifies the origin of these critters in the folklore of past generations. Continuing in the tradition of ancient folklore, contends Schelde, science fiction film is a fictional account of the ongoing battle between nature and culture. With the advance of science, the trolls, dwarves, pixies, nixies, and huldres that represented the unknown natural forces of the world were virtually killed off by ever-increasing knowledge and technology. The natural forces of the past that provided a threat to humans were replaced by the danger of unknown scientific experiments and disasters, as represented by their offspring: science fiction monsters.
As the development of genetics, biomedical engineering, and artificial intelligence blur the lines between human and machine in the real world, thus invading the natural landscape with the products of man's techno-culture, the representation of this development poses interesting questions. As Per Schelde shows, it becomes increasingly difficult in science fiction film to define the humans from their creations, and thus increasingly difficult to identify the monster.
Unlike science fiction literature, science fiction film has until now been largely neglected as a genre worthy of study and scholarship. Androids, Humanoids, and Other Folklore Monsters explores science fiction (sf) film as the modern incarnation of folklore, emblematic of the struggle between nature and culture--but with a new twist.
Schelde explains how, as science conquered the forests and mountains of the wild, the mythic creatures of these realms--trolls, elves, and ogres--were relegated to cartoons and children's stories. Technology and outer space came to represent the modern wild, and this new unknown came alive in the popular imagination with the embodiments of our fears of that unknown: androids, cyborgs, genetics, and artificial intelligence gone awry. Implicit in all of these is a fear, and an indictment, of the power of science to invade our minds and bodies, replacing the individual soul with a mechanical, machine-made one.
Focusing his analysis on sixty-five popular films, from Frankenstein and Metropolis to Invasion of the Body Snatchers, The Terminator, and Blade Runner, Per Schelde brings his command of traditional folklore to this serious but eminently readable look at SF movies, decoding their curious and often terrifying images as expressions of modern man's angst in the face of a rapidly advancing culture he cannot control. Anyone with an interest in popular culture, folklore, film studies, or science fiction will enjoy this original and comprehensive study.
The definitive collection of the best in science fiction stories between 1929-1964.
This book contains twenty-six of the greatest science fiction stories ever written. They represent the considered verdict of the Science Fiction Writers of America, those who have shaped the genre and who know, more intimately than anyone else, what the criteria for excellence in the field should be. The authors chosen for The Science Fiction Hall Fame are the men and women who have shaped the body and heart of modern science fiction; their brilliantly imaginative creations continue to inspire and astound new generations of writers and fans.
Robert Heinlein in "The Roads Must Roll" describes an industrial civilization of the future caught up in the deadly flaws of its own complexity. "Country of the Kind," by Damon Knight, is a frightening portrayal of biological mutation. "Nightfall," by Isaac Asimov, one of the greatest stories in the science fiction field, is the story of a planet where the sun sets only once every millennium and is a chilling study in mass psychology.
Originally published in 1970 to honor those writers and their stories that had come before the institution of the Nebula Awards, The Science Fiction Hall Of Fame, Volume One, was the book that introduced tens of thousands of young readers to the wonders of science fiction. Too long unavailable, this new edition will treasured by all science fiction fans everywhere.
The Science Fiction Hall Of Fame, Volume One, includes the following stories:
Introduction by Robert Silverberg
"A Martian Odyssey" by Stanley G. Weinbaum
"Twilight" by John W. Campbell
"Helen O'Loy" by Lester del Rey
"The Roads Must Roll" by Robert A. Heinlein
"Microcosmic God" by Theodore Sturgeon
"Nightfall" by Isaac Asimov
"The Weapon Shop" by A. E. van Vogt
"Mimsy Were the Borogoves" by Lewis Padgett
"Huddling Place" by Clifford D. Simak
"Arena" by Frederic Brown
"First Contact" by Murray Leinster
"That Only a Mother" by Judith Merril
"Scanners Live in Vain" by Cordwainer Smith
"Mars is Heaven " by Ray Bradbury
"The Little Black Bag" by C. M. Kornbluth
"Born of Man and Woman" by Richard Matheson
"Coming Attraction" by Fritz Leiber
"The Quest for Saint Aquin" by Anthony Boucher
"Surface Tension" by James Blish
"The Nine Billion Names of God" by Arthur C. Clarke
"It's a Good Life" by Jerome Bixby
"The Cold Equations" by Tom Godwin
"Fondly Fahrenheit" by Alfred Bester
"The Country of the Kind," Damon Knight
"Flowers for Algernon" by Daniel Keyes
"A Rose for Ecclesiastes" by Roger Zelazny
The #1 New York Times bestseller that started a worldwide phenomenon and inspired a major motion picture is now available in a beautifully designed Collector's Edition. This deluxe package features:
72 pages of bonus content, including:
This edition makes a great gift for established fans who want to expand their Divergent library or who already own the Insurgent Collector's Edition; readers new to the series who want a fuller reading experience; and fans of the feature film.
Taking place in a futuristic Chicago in which society is divided into five factions, Divergent is the gripping story of a dystopian world transformed by courage, self-sacrifice, and love.
A blazingly inventive near-future thriller from the best-selling, Hugo Award-winning John Scalzi.
Not too long from today, a new, highly contagious virus makes its way across the globe. Most who get sick experience nothing worse than flu, fever and headaches. But for the unlucky one percent - and nearly five million souls in the United States alone - the disease causes "Lock In": Victims fully awake and aware, but unable to move or respond to stimulus. The disease affects young, old, rich, poor, people of every color and creed. The world changes to meet the challenge.
A quarter of a century later, in a world shaped by what's now known as "Haden's syndrome," rookie FBI agent Chris Shane is paired with veteran agent Leslie Vann. The two of them are assigned what appears to be a Haden-related murder at the Watergate Hotel, with a suspect who is an "integrator" - someone who can let the locked in borrow their bodies for a time. If the Integrator was carrying a Haden client, then naming the suspect for the murder becomes that much more complicated.
But "complicated" doesn't begin to describe it. As Shane and Vann began to unravel the threads of the murder, it becomes clear that the real mystery - and the real crime - is bigger than anyone could have imagined. The world of the locked in is changing, and with the change comes opportunities that the ambitious will seize at any cost. The investigation that began as a murder case takes Shane and Vann from the halls of corporate power to the virtual spaces of the locked in, and to the very heart of an emerging, surprising new human culture. It's nothing you could have expected.
Old Man's War Series
#1 Old Man's War
#2 The Ghost Brigades
#3 The Last Colony
#4 Zoe's Tale
#5 The Human Division
#6 The End of All Things
Short fiction: "After the Coup"
Other Tor Books
The Android's Dream
Agent to the Stars
Your Hate Mail Will Be Graded
The Collapsing Empire (forthcoming)