#11 – John W. Campbell and the Golden Age of Sci-Fi

Writer's History #3 – Dr. Benjamin Stevens Interview A Reader's History of Science Fiction

Dr. Benjamin Stevens is a professor of classical studies who researches the relationship between the ancient/classical tradition and science fiction and fantasy. In this wide-ranging interview, we discuss what makes sci-fi distinctive, classicism and modernity, ancient aliens, and more. Dr. Steven's profile. Classical Traditions in Science Fiction, ed. by Brett Rogers and Benjamin Stevens. Dr. Steven's book recommendations: The Just City/Thessaly Trilogy by Jo Walton Radiance by Catherynne M. Valente
  1. Writer's History #3 – Dr. Benjamin Stevens Interview
  2. #28 – Children's Sci-Fi in the New Wave
  3. #27 – Feminist Science Fiction
  4. Writer's History #2 – Kira Leigh Interview
  5. #26 – Vonnegut, Adams, and Modern Satire

John W. Campbell was the controversial longtime editor of Astounding Science Fiction who single-handedly directed the course of science fiction in the 1940s, a time that is not called the “golden age of sci-fi.” However, I argue the golden age continued through the 1950s as writers who got their start under Campbell began publishing on their own.

Book recommendation: Mission of Gravity by Hal Clement.

Robert Silverberg on the golden age.
The Internet Speculative Fiction Database’s “Most-Viewed Short Fiction.”
Cory Doctorow on Campbell.
My essay on “The Cold Equations.”

Other books mentioned:
The Black Cloud by Fred Hoyle

Check out this episode!

About Alex R. Howe

I'm a full-time astrophysicist and a part-time science fiction writer.
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