Star Trek and History

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2013-03-18
  • Publisher: Wiley
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A guide to the history that informs the world of Star Trek --just in time for the next JJ Abrams Star Trek movie For a series set in our future, Star Trek revisits the past constantly. Kirk and Spock battle Nazis, Roman gladiators, and witness the Great Depression. When theyre not doubling back on their own earlier timelines, the crew uses the holodeck to spend time in the American Old West or Victorian England. Alien races have their own complex and fascinating histories, too. The Star Trek universe is a sci-fi imagining of a future world that is rooted in our own human history. Gene Roddenberry created a television show with a new world and new rules in order to comment on social and political issues of the 1960s, from the Vietnam War and race relations to the war on terror and womens rights. Later Star Trek series and films also grapple with the issues of their own decades: HIV, ecological threats, the collapse of the Soviet Union, and terrorism. How did Uhura spur real-life gender and racial change in the 1960s? Is Kirk inextricably linked with the mythical Old West? What history do the Klingons share with the Soviet Union? Can Nazi Germany shed light on the history and culture of the Cardassians? Star Trek and History explains how the holodeck is as much a source for entertainment as it is a historical teaching tool, how much of the technology we enjoy today had its conceptual roots in Star Trek , and how by looking at Norse mythology we can find our very own Q. Features an exclusive interview with Nichelle Nichols, the actress behind the original Lt. Uhura, conducted at the National Air and Space Museum Explains the historical inspiration behind many of the shows alien races and storylines Covers topics ranging from how stellar cartography dates back to Ancient Rome, Greece, and Babylonia to how our "Great Books" of western literature continue to be an important influence to Star Trek s characters of the future Includes a timeline comparing the stardates of Star Trek s timeline to our own real world history Filled with fascinating historical comparisons, Star Trek and History is an essential companion for every Star Trek fan.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments: A Piece of the Action: The Pleasures of Sharing Star Trek xi

A Timeline of Stardates xiii
Alan Kistler

Star Trek Series and Movie Titles: A Universal Translator xxv

Introduction: Time Warps and Future Histories 1
Nancy R. Reagin

PART ONE Characters [Are] Welcome: Backstories

1 Riding Posse on the Final Frontier: James T. Kirk, Hero of the Old West 7
Alice L. George

2 More Than “Just Uhura”: Understanding Star Trek’s Lt. Uhura, Civil Rights, and Space History 22
Margaret A. Weitekamp

3 The Compassionate Country Doctor and Cold-Blooded Biomedicine: Bones, Spock, and Medicine beyond the Machine 39
Brenda Gardenour

4 Who Is Q? 57
Alan Kistler

PART TWO Kirk and Spock Take on Earth History

5 The Final Reflection?: A Mirrored Empire?: Klingon History and American History 71
Lori Maguire

6 Vietnam, Star Trek, and the Real Future 87
H. Bruce Franklin

7 You’re Doing It Wrong: Cause and Effect in Star Trek’s Histories 109
Michael Lewis

8 If This Is the (Final) Frontier, Where Are the Natives? 125
Amy H. Sturgis

9 Terrorizing Space: Star Trek, Terrorism, and History 143
John Putman

10 To Boldly Go When No One Has Gone Before (or After): Star Trek’s Timelines 158
Karma Waltonen

PART THREE Future Culture

11 Shakespeare (and the Rest of the Great Books) in the Original Klingon 179
Elizabeth Baird Hardy

12 Information Technology in Star Trek: Android versus Android, iPads versus PADDs, Facebook versus the Borg 194
Brent McDonald

13 History on the Holodeck 212
Marcus Schulzke

14 Why Star Trek’s Cartography Is So Stellar, or How the Borg Mapped/Changed Everything 226
Matthew D. Mingus

15 Who’s the Devil?: Species Extinction and Environmentalist Thought in Star Trek 242
Dolly Jørgensen

PART FOUR Other Races Have Histories Too, You Know

16 Nothing Unreal Exists: The Contradictory Logic of Vulcan History 263
Alex Robles

17 Alien Babes and Alternate Universes: The Women of Star Trek 280
M. G. DuPree

18 Klingons: Going Medieval on You 295
Christian Domenig

19 Nazis, Cardassians, and Other Villains in the Final Frontier 307
Amy Carney

Negotiating the Legacy of Star Trek and Its Fans 323
Rick Worland

Starfleet Academy Instructors 341

Index: Databanks 349

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