Our books on Bokbörsen

Our DVD-filmd on Bokbörsen

Our  Comics on Bokbörsen


Science Fiction


A swedish science fiction blog: Cybermag


Arthur C Clarke Foundation

1,5 hour interview with Philip K Dick

Locus Magazine


Gunn Center for the study of science fiction


A suggestion from The Gunn Center for Studies of Science Fiction for a basic book collection


Science Fiction Book Store in Stockholm




Atlas of the universe

Constellation art turned on. Stellarium
Celestia is a free downloadable 3D space travel simulator
Plasma universe - Hannes Alfvén - the universe´s known matter consists of 99,99..% plasma.
Secrets of Time - Nicolai Kozyrev
The Electric Universe
Listen to & watch a film about the aurora borealis
Subquantum Kinetics




The origin of Science Fiction: Scientific romance


Scientific romance is an archaic name for what is now known as the science fiction genre. The term is most associated with the early science fiction of the United Kingdom and the earliest noteworthy use of the term scientific romance is believed to have been by Charles Howard Hinton in his 1886 collection. That said it can also refer to early science fiction from several nations, in particular the works of French writers like Jules Verne and Camille Flammarion.

Brian Stableford in The Science Romance in Britain: 1890-1950 argued that early British science fiction writers who used this term had several significant differences from early American SF writers. They generally underemphasized the role of "heroes", took an "evolutionary perspective", held a bleaker view of the future, and generally had little interest in seeing space as a new frontier. On the issue of heroes several novels by H. G. Wells have the protagonist as nameless or powerless before natural forces. The evolutionary perspective can be seen in tales involving long time periods. Two examples of that being The Time Machine by Wells and Star Maker by Olaf Stapledon. Even in Scientific Romances that did not involve vast stretches of time the issue of whether mankind was just another species subject to evolutionary pressures could arise. This can be seen in parts of The Hampdenshire Wonder by J. D. Beresford and several works by S. Fowler Wright. On space in C. S. Lewis's Space Trilogy took the position that "as long as humanity remains flawed and sinful, our exploration of other planets will tend to do them more harm than good." That stated most Scientific Romance authors simply had little interest in the topic. As for the bleakness it can be seen in some of the works by all of the above as humanity was deemed flawed either because of original sin or, much more often, because of biological factors inherited from ape ancestors.

That stated the term was used in these eras for stories that might not fit Stableford's thesis. The period he discussed did have British science fiction that reveled in adventures in space and held an optimistic view of the future. Related to this by the 1930s there were already British authors, like Eric Frank Russell, who intentionally wrote "science fiction" for American publications. At that point British writers who used the term "scientific romance" did so because they were either unaware of science fiction or chose not to be associated with it.

After World War II the influence of American science fiction caused the term "Scientific Romance" to lose favor. This was helped by the fact that few writers of Scientific Romance considered themselves to be "Scientific Romance" writers. Instead they viewed themselves just as writers, or on occasion scientists, who sometimes wrote Scientific Romances. That stated the influence of the Scientific-Romance era writers remained in British science fiction and also had some impact on the American variety.

The term however has had a revival, of sorts, starting in the late 1970s. It began to be used for eccentric, usually but not always British, science fiction that intentionally reflects a Victorian era or Edwardian period mentality. Christopher Priest (English novelist) used or alluded to "scientific romance" in novels and is a member of the H. G. Wells Society. The contemporary use of the term also includes authors who, like the original "Scientific Romance writers", do not consider themselves to be science fiction or scientific romance authors. For example English historian Ronald Wright wrote the Wells pastiche, or homage, A Scientific Romance: A Novel.[1] The modern use of the term could also be viewed as relational to Steampunk, but with important differences. As a rule modern "scientific romances" take a more nostalgic or romanticize view of the era and often involve the future rather than the past. The future in such works is simply based on Victorian or Edwardian sensibilities. Modern Scientific Romances are also not of any form of "punk" or cyberpunk ethos.