Saturday, October 21, 2006


That's a great word isn't it? Conjures up all kinds of images. Spinning space wheels and Lunar Fun Parks, not to mention rings around the rings around the 7th Planet (hint- the one that begins with a 'U').

For anyone growing up like I did with visions of orbiting space colonies, terraforming Mars and Bussard ram-jets, De Witt Kilgore's Astrofuturism: Science, Race and Visions of Utopia in Space (2003, Pennsylvania UP) is a must read.

It explores the popular conceptions of Space as a final fronteir and a projection of Euro-American colonial experience and utopian visions. He examines the scientists and the science fiction writers creating the visions of a glorious future in space: from Gerard O'Neil and the NASA AMES/Stanford summer workshop and its visions of orbital suburbua to Robert Heinlein, Ben Bova and Arthur C. Clarke and more recent writers like Jerry Pournell.

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