Saturday, 23 May 2015


Is anyone out there becoming tired of Starfarers? I am not. Each of these posts is a very brief comment on a very short section of an extremely dense and rich text that addresses:

modern physics and cosmogony;
a neutron star, a black hole and a recurrent nova (that last I had never heard of before);
the ultimate effects of technology on society;
cosmic life and alien intelligence;
personal interactions and relationships;
language and communication;
the cosmic role of intelligence.

I find Sean M. Brooks' division of Poul Anderson's career into three phases helpful and illuminating:

the Psychotechnic History, an early phase series, was abandoned because science had moved on and the author's views had changed;

the Technic History and the Time Patrol are mature works of the middle period;

The Boat Of A Million Years closes the middle period and opens the later period;

the Harvest of Stars Tetralogy, Starfarers and Genesis are later period future histories addressing new themes and very different from the already mature works of the middle period.

There remains a great deal more to be said about Starfarers.

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

No, I'm not tired of your exhaustive commentaries on the works of Poul Anderson! In fact you are reminding me I should reread more of his books, esp. STARFARERS.

I am naturally glad you found my "Three Phases" article "helpful and illuminating." I had wondered if it would be of any use and interest.

This may be my last note on this blog till at least next Tuesday. I should try to get some rest before the livery service picks me up.