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Thread: Definition of Science Fiction

  1. #1 Definition of Science Fiction 
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    I guess that Science Fiction contains all subgroups of science, such as genetic modification (like vampires) and technology (Halos, Star war etc).

    To an extent would Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles be considered Science Fiction? Even though it's more on the culture of another different Race...


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  3. #2  
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    I'd say her Vampire Chronicles are more fantasy than sci-fi, since it doesn't revolve around technology affecting society or anything like that.

    How about Shelley's Frankenstein? I often find myself debating whether it is sf or not. I'd say it is, at least by my definition.


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    WYSIWYG Moderator marnixR's Avatar
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    i like Campbell's definition of science fiction : whatever a science fiction editor decides to publish ...
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
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  5. #4  
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    Quote Originally Posted by marnixR
    i like Campbell's definition of science fiction : whatever a science fiction editor decides to publish ...
    I guess the editor is quite headstrong :-D

    The main trouble I face now as a part-time libarian is to try and decide which book is science-fiction, which is a non-fiction and which are the non-science-fiction.

    Books like Hyperion and Star Wars are obviously science-fictions, but some other books dwell in the grey areas between science-fic and non-fics. A stack of books I was arranging the other day held such combinations (sadly i forgot the titles). One of the book I flipped through contain an era that has an more advanced technology than our present world, and with long explanations, albeit in dialogue form, explaining the theory behind those..machines. With quotes as well.

    Science-fiction? May be. Non-fic? May be, it does contain accurate references.

    By the way, I did NOT slack during my part-time job.
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  6. #5  
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    I like Damon Knight's definition. "Science fiction is that which I point at when I say, "Thus is SF." Knight was one of those guys who had a limited defintion of SF. He definitely would not include the Anne Rice books. Personally I don't consider those SF either. Those things are horror/erotica, and science is not used to resolve any of the conflict, nor are there really any SF tropes used in them.

    I personally have a looser definition than Knight, and would include the Utopia stuff, like 1984, Brave New World, Animal Farm (which is more properly a fable, but technically still could fit).
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