Thursday, 10 December 2015
"From the standpoint of our mature integrated culture, World War III was a painful childhood illness of our race."
-Sandra Miesel, Foreword IN Poul Anderson, The Psychotechnic League (New York, 1981), pp. 10-11 AT p, 10.
Miesel's Foreword also echoes the Time Chart of Robert Heinlein's Future History, which culminates in:
"...the end of human adolescence, and beginning of first mature culture."
-Robert Heinlein, The Man Who Sold The Moon (London, 1963), pp. 6-7 AT p. 7.
Wells' The Shape Of Things To Come outlines the emergence of a scientifically based peaceful world civilization.
In his Author's Note to The Psychotechnic League, Anderson cites Heinlein and Olaf Stapledon as earlier future historians. Wells preceded both:
Stapledon combines the Wellsian themes of space travel, time travel, Martian invasion and future history in a single volume;
Heinlein has the same four themes in separate works - if we change "Martian invasion" to "alien invasion," - including three "first men in the moon" stories;
the title character of the title story of The Man Who Sold The Moon somewhere mentions having read Wells, Verne and Smith;
the suspended animation company in Heinlein's The Door Into Summer distributes Wells' The Sleeper Wakes as promotional literature.
Anderson indirectly acknowledges Wells in There Will Be Time - and even less overtly in "Time Patrol" by sending Manse Everard to the year of publication of The Time Machine. I recently discussed references to communism in The Time Machine and Anderson's "The Sensitive Man."
"Remember Wells" is a continual refrain on this blog - but also appreciate Poul Anderson as a major successor.