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2 What is Science Fiction?  Generally, it is defined as “stories that tell about the future by blending scientific data and theory with the author’s creative imagination,” (The Language of Literature 27).  This genre is very broad—it includes many very different stories.

3 Key Elements  Set in the future  Theoretically plausible plots Often predict future technological developments, and even inspire them!  Presents some kind of prediction or warning about the future This is usually considered the theme.

4 Other Common Elements  Space travel / exploration  Aliens  Monsters often the product of radiation, like Godzilla  Futuristic technology Weapons, computers, and especially ROBOTS! ○ The word “robot” was coined by a SciFi writer illustrated.html

5 That sounds a lot like Fantasy!  Yes and no: Both involve a lot of imagination! But, no magical or impossible elements are used in SF ○ Fantasy plots can include magic, dragons, unicorns, etc. Fantasy might be considered an escape from reality, with no predictions or warnings, while SF is meant to be a reminder of what is happening in the world today.

6 “Science fiction is a depiction of the real. Fantasy is a depiction of the unreal.” ~R. Bradbury SF plots can be explained through science ○ The science used usually doesn’t currently exist. Instead, authors predict that it could exist at some point in the future. ○ SF authors are known for often being RIGHT!

7  ***SF is rarely written just for fun*** There is usually an underlying theme, or ‘moral,’ that acts as a warning to the reader.  SF writers take things that already exist and imagine what could happen in the future if we stay on the same path. Hint: It’s not usually good.  In this way, SF works as a very effective social commentary The author is trying to tell us how the way we live is going wrong

8 “Science ran too far ahead of us too quickly, and the people got lost in a mechanical wilderness,” ~R. Bradbury (The Language of Literature 68-69).

9 Some famous SF authors  George Orwell 1984, Animal Farm  Jules Verne 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Around the World in 80 Days, Journey to the Center of the Earth  H.G.Wells The War of the Worlds  Ray Bradbury Fahrenheit 451 “The Pedestrian”  Isaac Asimov  Arthur C. Clarke Jules Verne

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