Interesting Facts About Science Fiction: “Literature Of Ideas”

Fiction is any story or setting that is derived from imagination—in other words, not based strictly on history or fact. A work of fiction implies the inventive act of world building, so its audience does not typically expect it to be totally faithful to the real world in presenting only characters who are actual people or descriptions that are factually true.
Instead, the context of fiction, generally understood as not adhering precisely to the real world, is more open to interpretation. Characters and events within a fictional work may even be set in their own context entirely separate from the known universe: an independent fictional universe.
Science fiction (Sci-Fi) is a genre of speculative fiction, usually dealing with imaginative concepts such as advanced science and technology, time travel, spaceflight, and extraterrestrial life. Science fiction often explores the potential consequences of scientific and other innovations, and has been called a “literature of ideas”.
Without further ado, let’s look at some interesting facts you probably didn’t know about science fiction:
1. Forrest J Ackerman is credited with first using the term “Sci-Fi” in 1954. As science fiction entered popular culture, fans and writers active in the field came to associate the term with low-budget, low-tech “B-movies” and with low-quality pulp science fiction.
By the 1970s, critics within the field such as Knight and Terry Carr were using sci-fi to distinguish hack-work from serious science fiction.
2. The first known science fiction film is 1902’s A Trip to the Moon, directed by French filmmaker Georges Méliès.
It was profoundly influential on later filmmakers, bringing creativity to the cinematic medium and offering fantasy for pure entertainment, a rare goal in film at the time.
In addition, Méliès’s innovative editing and special effects techniques were widely imitated and became important elements of the medium.
The film also spurred on the development of cinematic science fiction and fantasy by demonstrating that scientific themes worked on the screen and the camera could transform that reality.
3. Science fiction has sometimes been used as a means of social protest. James Cameron’s film Avatar was intended as a protest against imperialism, and specifically against the European colonization of the Americas. Its images were used by, among others, Palestinians in their protest against Israel.
4. A diverse population of authors worldwide write science fiction. According to 2013 statistics by the science fiction publisher Tor Books, men outnumber women by 78% to 22% among submissions to the publisher.
5. Feminist science fiction poses questions about social issues such as how society constructs gender roles, the role reproduction plays in defining gender and the unequal political and personal power of men over women.
Some of the most notable feminist science fiction works have illustrated these themes using utopias to explore a society in which gender differences or gender power imbalances don’t exist, or dystopias to explore worlds in which gender inequalities are intensified, thus asserting a need for feminist work to continue.
6. Science fiction’s great rise in popularity in the first half of the twentieth century was closely tied to the respect paid to science at that time, as well as the rapid pace of technological innovation and new inventions.
Science fiction has almost always predicted scientific and technological progress. Some works predict this leading to improvements in life and society, for instance the stories of Arthur C. Clarke and the Star Trek series.
7. The first known science fiction television program, which the BBC’s pre-war BBC Television service produced. On 11 February 1938, a thirty-five-minute adapted extract of the play RUR, written by the Czech playwright Karel Čapek, was broadcast live from the BBC’s Alexandra Palace studios.
The first popular science fiction program on American television was the children’s adventure serial Captain Video and His Video Rangers that ran from June 1949 to April 1955.

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