American Science Fiction and the Cold War: Literature and Film

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 7/1/1999
  • Publisher: Routledge
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American Science Fiction--in both literature and film--has played a key role in the portrayal of the fears inherent in the Cold War. The end of this era heralds the need for a reassessment of the literary output of the forty-year period since 1945. Working through a series of key texts,American Science Fiction and the Cold Warinvestigates the political inflections put on American narratives in the post-war decades by Cold War cultural circumstances. Nuclear holocaust, Russian invasion, and the perceived rise of totalitarianism in American society are key elements in the author's exploration of science fiction narratives that includeFahrenheit 451,Invasion of the Body Snatchers, andDr. Strangelove.

Author Biography

David Seed is Reader in the Department of English at the University of Liverpool, England

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements vi
Introduction 1(13)
I Postwar Jeremiads: Philip Wylie and Leo Szilard
II Variations on a Patriotic Theme: Robert A. Heinlein
III History and Apocalypse in Poul Anderson
IV Views from the Hearth
V Cultures of Surveillance
VI Take-Over Bids; Frederik Pohl and Cyril Kornbluth
VII The Russians Have Come
VIII Embodying the Arms Race: Bernard Wolfe's Limbo
IX The Cold War Computerised
X Conspiracy Narratives
XI Absurdist Visions: Dr. Strangelove in Context
XII The Signs of War: Walter M. Miller and Russell Hoban
XIII In the Aftermath
XIV The Star Wars Debate
Bibliography 194(18)
Index 212

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