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Joanna Russ

How to build your SF Reference Library: Essays

by Paul

If you start getting into the more academic areas of science fiction criticism, then you’re going to have to get used to dealing with essays. Much academic criticism comes in the form of essays (come to think of it, many books are really compilations of essays). Some of these are heavy going (there are always […]

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How to Build Your SF Reference Library: Classic Reviews

by Paul

I know, it’s been a little while since we added to this feature, but there are always more books to add to the library. And this post takes us back, in a sense, to the early days of science fiction scholarship. The earliest sf scholarship was probably bibliographies, fans compiling detailed and complete lists of […]

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The greatest sf authors?

by Paul

There’s a post I’ve just come across (it seems to be a year old, but you know how these things disappear and resurface on the web) that claims to list “The Greatest Sci-Fi Authors of All Time“. It’s an interesting, if largely predictable list: Isaac Asimov, Philip K. Dick, Ursula K. Le Guin, Frank Herbert, […]

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5 of the Best: Joanna Russ

by Paul

Joanna Russ is a name that keeps cropping up on this blog. Usually it is because of one novel, The Female Man, because frankly whenever the talk turns to feminist science fiction this is the novel you absolutely have to mention. It’s an important book. No, I’d go further than that and say it is an […]

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Women SF Writers you should be reading, part 1

by Paul

To coincide with International Women’s Day, we’ve put together an A-Z of women sf writers you should be reading. The list doesn’t even pretend to be exhaustive, for a start we’re keeping to just one writer per letter so the list could be many many many times longer than it actually is (on the plus […]

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10 Essential SF Works from the 1980s

by Paul

Our peripatetic history of science fiction brings us to one of the more momentous decades in the history of the genre. The 1970s had been a decade in which no more than a handful of great writers emerged. The effects of the new wave slowly ran down, and the most important event in the history […]

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10 Essential works of Science Fiction from the 1970s

by Paul

The 70s was a strange, liminal time in science fiction. As the decade began, the New Wave was still in full flood, but the wave petered out very quickly. In Britain, New Worlds magazine folded and was replaced by an original anthology series called New Worlds Quarterly that, despite its title, managed only 10 issues in six years […]

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6 challenging sf works and why you should read them

by Paul

The thing I’ve noticed, writing these blog posts, is how often when I’m writing about a book I really rate the word I reach for is “challenging”. I use it all the time. I use it far more than you see, because I notice the repetitions and look for a synonym or rewrite the sentence. […]

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Elsewhere

by Paul

Lists Categories: Lists

African science fiction and Afrofuturism (not actually the same thing) have become big recently, and I’ve noticed several fascinating posts that it’s worth sharing. To start with, to celebrate the launch of AfroSF volume 2 edited by Ivor Hartmann, here’s a discussion involving Tade Thompson author of Making Wolf and Nick Wood author of Azanian Bridges. Then Literary […]

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Best Female Science Fiction before 1980: The SF Canon Men Don’t See

by Paul

While I was away (yes, I had a lovely holiday, thank you for asking), a couple of really interesting blog posts appeared: “Communities: Weight of History” by Renay came first, which elicited a response from Nina Allan, “The Weight of History“, and then, just yesterday, Maureen Speller added “{and then} – a writing life beyond […]

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