Solar Flares

BookSolar Flares

Solar Flares

Science Fiction in the 1970s

Liverpool Science Fiction Texts and Studies, 43


October 16th, 2012



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Science fiction produced in the 1970s has long been undervalued, dismissed by Bruce Sterling as “confused, self-involved, and stale.” The New Wave was all but over and Cyberpunk had yet to arrive. The decade polarised sf – on the one hand it aspired to be a serious form, addressing issues such as race, Vietnam, feminism, ecology and sexuality, on the other hand it broke box office records with Star Wars, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Alien and Superman: The Movie. Across the political spectrum, writers perceived a series of invisible enemies: radicals addressed the ideological structures of racism, sexism, homophobia, colonialism, pollution and capitalism and the possibility of new social structures, whereas conservatives feared the gains made by the civil rights movement, feminism, gay liberation, independence movements, ecology and Marxism and the perceived threats to the nuclear family. Sf would never be the same again. Beginning with chapters on the First sf and New Wave authors who published during the 1970s, Solar Flares examines the ways in which the genre confronted a new epoch and its own history, including the rise of fantasy, the sf blockbuster, children’s sf, pseudoscience and postmodernism. It explores significant figures such as Joanna Russ, Samuel R. Delany and Octavia Butler. From Larry Niven’s Ringworld to Thomas M. Disch’s On Wings of Song, from The Andromeda Strain to Flash Gordon and from Doctor Who to Buck Rogers, this book reclaims seventies sf writing, film and television – alongside music and architecture – as a crucial period in the history of science fiction.


'The author’s knowledge of the science fiction texts of the 1970s is absolutely compendious, covering not only the more mainstream sf writers of the 1970s but also some of the less well-known byways. Solar Flares constitutes a significant addition to sf scholarship.'
Brian Baker

'A superb work of narrative reference.'
Science Fiction Studies

'Solar Flares can especially be recommended to teachers and students seeking more ‘off-trail’ fare than they will find on the shelves at Barnes.'
Science Fiction Film and Television

Author Information

Andrew M. Butler is Senior Lecturer in Media and Cultural Studies at Canterbury Christchurch University. He is the author and editor of many books including (as co-editor) 'The Routledge Companion to Science Fiction' (Routledge, 2009) and 'Fifty Key Figures in Science Fiction' (Routledge, 2009).

Table of Contents

Table of Contents
Section TitlePagePrice
Title page4
Copyright page5
Table of Contents8
Chapter 122
Chapter 235
Chapter 349
Chapter 462
Chapter 576
Chapter 689
Chapter 7103
Chapter 8117
Chapter 9131
Chapter 10147
Chapter 11163
Chapter 12179
Chapter 13192
Chapter 14203
Chapter 15217
Chapter 16232