Saturday, 16 February 2013

Echoes Of Heinlein

Poul Anderson's Three Worlds To Conquer (London, 1966) features a colony on Ganymede like Robert Heinlein's Farmer In The Sky and a successful revolution against an American dictatorship like Heinlein's Revolt In 2100.

After twelve years on Ganymede, Anderson's Mark Fraser considers returning to Earth but then is unsure because:

"...if Ganymede's rock and ice were hard to strike roots in, they gripped those roots all the more tightly." (pp. 8-9)

This echoes Heinlein's story, "It's Great To Be Back!" A young couple reach the end of their contracted time in the lunar colony and thankfully return to Earth only to find that they are no longer at home there so, at the end of the story, they are back on the Moon, saying, "It's great to be back!"

Having as yet reread Three Worlds To Conquer only as far as p. 11, I will now watch out for any other Heinlein parallels. Another such could be that there are Jovians, inhabitants of Jupiter, both in this Anderson novel and in Heinlein's Future History. However, Anderson's Jovians are major characters whereas the Future History Jovians are merely mentioned.

"It's Great to be Back!" and Revolt In 2100 belong to the Future History whereas Farmer In The Sky belongs to Heinlein's alternative or juvenile Future History along with Red Planet, Space Cadet, The Rolling Stones and Time For The Stars. As I remarked previously, Anderson's History of Technic Civilisation parallels the Future History but on a vaster spatiotemporal scale.

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