Science Fiction Studies

#24 = Volume 8, Part 2 = July 1981



We are grieved to report that Robert C. Elliott died suddenly of a stroke on April 13th. A Professor of English Literature at the University of California, San Diego, since 1964, Elliott made his reputation with his first book, The Power of Satire (Princeton UP, 1960), and confirmed it with The Shape of Utopia (Chicago UP, 1970). Readers of this journal may also be familiar with his essays on Swift, his edition of Looking Backward, etc. Shortly before his death he had completed a study of the persona that will (as it now must) stand as a summing up of a lifetime of thinking about such matters. We remain the beneficiaries of his wisdom and his humanity.

Professor Susan Wood of the University of British Columbia died on November 12, 1980, at the age of 32. Professor Wood wrote numerous articles on Canadian literature and on SF, including "Women in Science Fiction" (in Algol; rptd. in Teaching Science Fiction, ed. Jack Williamson) and "Discovering Worlds: The Fiction of Ursula K. Le Guin" (in Voices for the Future, Vol. 2, ed. Thomas Clareson). The Language of the Night: Essays on Fantasy and Science Fiction by Ursula K. Le Gain was introduced and edited by her. She was also editor of a special issue of Room of One's Own (Fall, 1980), which featured SF and fantasy by women; and co-editor of Energumen, a journal about SF. Shortly before her death, Professor Wood's article on James Tiptree. Jr. was accepted for publication in Science Fiction Writers (NY: Scribner's). The death of Susan Wood is a considerable loss to the Canadian academic community and to SF scholarship, and will be regretted by the editors of SFS, with whom she had always had cordial and fruitful relations.—The Editors


On Lem on Asimov

We are extremely grateful to Charles Cushing of Hamilton, Ontario for wiring us that "the story by Isaac Asimov which Stanislaw Lem discusses on page 67 of your March 1981 issue is called 'Strike-Breaker' and appears as the 12th story in Nightfall and Other Stories."—The Editors

According to Asimov's introductory note in Nightfall, the story was first published in Original Science Fiction Stories (Jan. 1957) under the title "Male Strikebreaker." (The note also describes the genesis of the story.)                

I am puzzled by Lem's claim that the story's assumption is "obviously antiempirical." Lem extrapolates from the changing social relations of housekeepers; but Asimov, although he explicitly refers to Hindu caste relations in "Strikebreaker," is clearly extrapolating from the relatively unchanging (even in 1957) conditions of American race and ethnic relations—a major theme in much of his work.—Peter F. Wilson



A mix-up defaced the fifth and sixth entries, p. 51, of Angenot and Khouri's "Bibliography of Prehistoric Fiction" in SFS 23. They should read:

Hoffmann, E.T.A. (1776-1822). "Nachrift von einem gebildeten jungen Mann," Hoffmanns ausgewählte Schriften. Berlin & Stuttgart, 1827-. (Humanized Ape)
Hoffmann, Oskar (1866-?). MacMilfords Reisen im Universum. Von der Terra zu Luna oder Unter den Seleniten. Roda: Gebr. Vogt, 1902. 1 vol. in 10 "Hefter." (Interplanetary Fiction - Missing Link). —MA


SF in Québec: A Postscript

We are pleased to announce, as a postscript to Vonarburg and Spehner's survey of Québec SF (SFS No. 21 [1980]) that the first two volumes of the new French Series "Chroniques du Futur" have just appeared at Le Préambule publishing house in Montreal. These are J.-P. April's Machine à explorer la fiction and Elisabeth Vonarburg's collection of short stories l'Oeil de la nuit. The editor of this SF series (the only series of its kind existing in French Canada today) is Norbert Spehner.—MA


Science Fiction and Fantasy Art Show

The Canton Art Institute, Canton, Ohio is pleased to announce it will sponsor an SF and fantasy art show for early 1982. It is the intention of the guest curator, Dr Samuel H. Vasbinder, to present a definitive view of the best SF and fantasy art available. All media from painting and drawing to sculpture and jewelry are being sought. Well-known artists in the field as well as newcomers are urged to send material to the CAI for consideration. Artists should submit six transparencies clearly labelled with title, size of work, and artist's name by August 31, 1981. It would be helpful if artists would include a résumé of training and philosophy as well as descriptions of the media in which the works submitted were carried out. Planned categories include: alien landscapes, man and ships in space, cities, sorcerers, imaginary landscapes, and sword and sorcery subjects. If feasible, a catalogue of the exhibit will be produced. Submissions should be sent to Dr Vasbinder at The Canton Art Institute/ 1001 Market Avenue North/ Canton. OH 44702. S.A.S.E. should be included.

SF Workshop: April in Paris

Scholars, writers, and aficionados of SF are invited to participate in a special series of workshops on "American and European Science Fiction: Interface and Interchange." These meetings will be held as part of the European Association for American Studies 1982 Biennial Conference in Paris, France, late April, 1982. They will be under the direction of Professor John Dean, Université Paris XIII, and Professor Jean Raynaud, Université de Bretagne Occidentale.                

Interested parties are urged to submit paper topics on any aspect of American and European SF. All approaches are viable, although essays which explore the interaction between American and European SF since World War 11 are especially desired. Requested length of paper presentations: 20-25 minutes, approximately 2,600 words. Papers must be in English.               

Please submit paper topics and brief abstracts as soon as possible to: Professor Jean Raynaud/Université de Bretagne Occidentale/Faculté des Lettres et Sciences Sociales de Brest/Section D'Anglais B.P. 860 - 29279 Brest Cedex/France.               

The papers themselves will be due during the late fall, 1981. Further information regarding the conference as a whole, our SF workshops, and accomodations in Paris will be supplied to interested participants in response to their replies.
                                                                                                                —John Dean

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