Fall 2012
Literature of Science Fiction:
Short Story Reading Guide

When do we read the stories and introductions, and from which books? This guide will help you find the readings without having to paw through the tables of contents.

Be sure to read the short essays that introduce each story, as well as the book introductions whenever we start a new volume.

Back to the short-fiction syllabus.

Volume I

The roots that grew our genre.

The Road to Science Fiction, From Gilgamesh to Wells: A fictional travelogue from proto-SF through the mothers and fathers of science fiction.

Reading
Group

Title

Author

Introduction

The First Voyage to the Moon

2

Excerpt from A True Story

Lucian of Samosata

Strange Creatures and Far Traveling

2

Excerpt from The Voyages and Travels of Sir John Mandeville

Anonymous

The Good Place That Is No Place

2

Excerpt from Utopia

Thomas More

The New Science and the Old Religion

2

Excerpt from The City of the Sun

Tommaso Campanella

Experience, Experiment, and the Battle for Men's Minds

2

Excerpt from The New Atlantis

Francis Bacon

A New Look at the Heavens and Another Trip to the Moon

2

Somnium or Lunar Astronomy

Johannes Kepler

Commuting to the Moon

3

Excerpt from A Voyage to the Moon

Cyrano de Bergerac

The Age of Reason and the Voice of Dissent

3

Excerpt from A Voyage to Laputa

Jonathan Swift

Imaginary Voyages in the Other Direction

2

excerpt from The Journey to the World Underground

Ludvig Holberg

Visitors From Space

3

"Micromgas"

Francois Marie Arouet de Voltaire

Science and Literature: When Worlds Collide

1

Excerpt from Frankenstein

Mary Shelley

Science as Symbol

1

"Rappaccini's Daughter"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

Anticipations of the Future

2

"Mellonta Tauta"

Edgar Allan Poe

Expanding the Vision

1

"The Diamond Lens"

Fitz-James O'Brien

The Indispensable Frenchman

2

Excerpt from Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea

Jules Verne

2

Excerpt from Around the Moon

Jules Verne

Lost Civilizations and Ancient Knowledge

4

Excerpt from She

H. Rider Haggard

The New Frontier

2

excerpt from Looking Backward

Edward Bellamy

New Magazines, New Readers, New Writers

3

"The Damned Thing"

Ambrose Bierce

A Flying Start

2

"With the Night Mail"

Rudyard Kipling

The Father of Modern Science Fiction

1

"The Star"

H.G. Wells

Volume 2

The birth of science fiction as a genre through the emergence of the Golden Age.

The Road to Science Fiction #2, From Wells to Heinlein: Experimenting in new worlds, exploring the sense of wonder.

Day

Name

Author

Acknowledgments

Introduction

Science: The New Accelerator

4

The New Accelerator

H.G. Wells

The Literary Dissent

1

The Machine Stops

E.M. Forster

Islands in the Sky, Or Romance Triumphant

4

Excerpt from Under the Moons of Mars

Edgar Rice Burroughs

More Things Under Heaven and Earth

3

The Moon Pool (2002)

A. Merritt

The people of the pit (1979)

A. Merritt

The Call of the Fantastic

3

The Red One

Jack London

The Horror Out of Providence

3

Dagon

H.P. Lovecraft

The Science-Fiction Magazine Begins Its Amazing Career

4

The Tissue-Culture King

Julian Huxley

Pedestrian Words, Soaring Concepts

3

The Revolt of the Pedestrians

David H. Keller, M.D.

The Philosopher of Time and Space

5

Excerpt from Last and First Men

Olaf Stapledon

Ford's in His Flivver

3

From Brave New World

Aldous Huxley

The Alien from Milwaukee

4

A Martian Odyssey

Stanley G. Weinbaum

Who Went There

1

Twilight

John W. Campbell

The Idea Machine

4

Proxima Centauri

Murray Leinster

The World-Wrecker on Mars

5

What's It Like Out There?

Edmond Hamilton

The Legion of Science Fiction

4

With Folded Hands

Jack Williamson

Mission of Levity

5

Hyperpilosity

L. Sprague de Camp

The Alchemists Gather

5

The Faithful

Lester del Rey

The Fairy Tales of Science

4

Black Destroyer

A.E. van Vogt

The Stars Appear

5

Nightfall

Isaac Asimov

The Man Who Sold the Genre

5

Requiem

Robert A. Heinlein

A Chronology of Science Fiction

About the Editor

Volume 3

Science fiction blossoms: The rise of the Golden Age through the New Wave and beyond

The Road to Science Fiction #3, From Heinlein to Here: What many consider the best work in the genre... at least the best published from 1940 to 1977.

Day

Name

Author

Beyond These Horizons

6

"All You Zombies"

Robert A. Heinlein

The Clear, Cool Voice of Asimov

5

Reason

Isaac Asimov

The Simak Reservation

7

Desertion

Clifford D. Simak

Mimsy Were the Kuttners

8

Mimsy Were the Borogoves

Lewis Padgett (Henry Kuttner and C. L. Moore)

The Bradbury Chronicles

7

The Million-Year Picnic

Ray Bradbury

More Than SF

7

Thunder and Roses

Theodore Sturgeon

Ecce Femina

7

That Only a Mother

Judith Merril

A Matter of Time

4

Brooklyn Project

William Tenn (Philip Klass)

The Social Side

8

Coming Attraction

Fritz Leiber

The Expanding Universe

8

The Sentinel

Arthur C. Clarke

Farmerworld

6

Sail On! Sail On!

Jos Farmer

The Science in Science Fiction

5

Critical Factor

Hal Clement

Why Not Literature?

9

Fondly Fahrenheit

Alfred Bester

A Touch of Stone

1

The Cold Equations

Tom Godwin

The Ballads of Lost C. Smith

7

The Game of Rat and Dragon

Cordwainer Smith

Scalpel of Wit

9

Pilgrimage to Earth

Robert Sheckley

The British Are Coming!

7

Who Can Replace a Man?

Brian W. Aldiss

The Sirens of Mainstream

8

Harrison Bergeron

Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

That Old-Time Religion

9

The Streets of Ashkelon

Harry Harrison

Terminal Fiction

7

The Terminal Beach

J. G. Ballard

Again and Again

7

Dolphin's Way

Gordon R. Dickson

The Future as Metaphor

8

Slow Tuesday Night

R. A. Lafferty

Through a Glass Darkly

7

Day Million

Frederik Pohl

Will Reality Please Raise Its Hand?

6

We Can Remember It for You Wholesale

Philip K. Dick

The New Thing

9

I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream

Harlan Ellison

Aye, and Delany

8

Aye, and Gomorrah

Samuel R. Delany

The New Scientific Revolution

8

The Jigsaw Man

Larry Niven

Hard Science and Soft People

8

Kyrie

Poul Anderson

Out of the Knight

9

Masks

Damon Knight

Surviving the Future

8

From Stand on Zanzibar

John Brunner

The Big Protest

7

The Big Flash

Norman Spinrad

The Origin and Development of Science Fiction Writers

6

Sundance

Robert Silverberg

Science Fiction as Simile

9

From The Left Hand of Darkness

Ursula K. Le Guin

Issues and Controversies

9

When It Changed

Joanna Russ

The Science Fiction Art Story

1

The Engine at Heartspring's Center

Roger Zelazny

The Uncertain Future

7

Tricentennial

Joe Haldeman

Volume 4

Science fiction comes of age.

The Road to Science Fiction #4, From Here to Forever: Literary influences on the genre; the genre begins to influence the mainstream literary culture.

Day

Name

Author

Born of Skill and Money

10

Born of Man and Woman

Richard Matheson

Heart of Darkness

11

The Luckiest Man in Denv

C.M. Kornbluth

A Clash of Symbols

10

Common Time

James Blush

Word Magic

12

My Boy Friend's Name is Jello

Avram Davidson

10

A Canticle for the Fifties

The First Canticle

Walter M. Miller, Jr.

The Lodestone Genre

10

Nobody Bothers Gus

Algis Budrys

Inferiority: The Complex Problem

10

Flowers for Algernon

Daniel Keyes

A Question of Identity

12

The Moon Moth

Jack Vance

The View From the Outside

11

The Library of Babel

Jorge Luis Borges

Inner Concerns in Outer Space

10

Excerpt from Dune

Frank Herbert

The Vigor of Traditional SF

12

Light of Other Days

Bob Shaw

Ambiguities and Inscrutabilities

12

The First Sally (A), or Trurl's Electronic Bard

Stanislaw Lem

Entropy and the World War

9

The heat death of the Universe

Pamela Zoline

Speculations on Speculative Fiction

12

The Planners

Kate Wilhelm

The Alienness of the Alien

10

The Dance of the Changer and the Three

Terry Carr

The Virtues of Indirection

10

The Last Flight of Dr. Ain

James Tiptree, Jr. (Alice Sheldon)

Radical Sensibility

11

Where No Sun Shines

Gardner Dozois

Escape Reading

10

The Island of Doctor Death and Other Stories

Gene Wolfe

Understanding Reader Reaction

11

Angouleme

Thomas M. Disch

The Postwar Generation

10

Gather Blue Roses

Pamela Sargent

The Star Trek Syndrome

11

With a Finger in My I

David Gerrold

Of Men, and Women, and Society

9

Of Mist, and Grass, and Sand

Vonda N. McIntyre

Of Novas and Other Stars

12

Air Raid

John Varley

Science Fiction, Aliens, and Alienation

11

Uncoupling

Barry Malzberg

Exotic Parables

11

Rogue Tomato

Michael Bishop

The Labor Day Group

11

This Tower of Ashes

George R.R. Martin

Fiction and Science

12

Particle Theory

Edward Bryant

The Anthropology of the Future

10A

View from a Height

Joan D. Vinge

Form and Content

11

The Word Sweep

George Zebrowski

Dialectic of History and Transcendence

12

The World Science Fiction Convention of 2080

Ian Watson

Estranging the Everyday

9

Abominable

Carol Emshwiller

Science and Fiction

12

Exposures

Gregory Benford

The Real and the Surreal

8

Schrdinger's Kitten

George Alec Effinger


updated 8/15/2012