Futures of the Past

An Anthology of Science Fiction Stories from the 19th and Early 20th Centuries, with Critical Essays

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About the Book

Science fiction boasts a deceptively long history, extending as far back as the 19th century. This anthology pairs original essays that introduce short stories of vintage science fiction. Critical introductions written by international experts contextualize these stories from the 19th and early 20th centuries. Inclusions range from legendary authors like Mary Shelley and Edgar Allan Poe to lesser-known figures like E.P Mitchell, George Parsons Lathrop, and Franklin Ruth.

About the Author(s)

Ivy Roberts is an interdisciplinary scholar specializing in film studies, STS and cultural history. She teaches film studies at Virginia Commonwealth University and is a professor of digital media at the University of Maryland University College. Her research investigates early media history from cultural contexts. She lives in Richmond, Virginia.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Ivy Roberts
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 202
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliographies, index
Copyright Date: 2020
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7504-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3892-8
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Introduction (Ivy Roberts) 1
The Future from the Past: Mary Shelley’s “Reanimated
Englishman” (Joanna Harker Shaw) 7
“Roger Dodsworth: The Reanimated Englishman” (1826/1863)
by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley 18
Lady Mesmer Circumnavigates the Scientific Imagination
in Poe’s “The ­Thousand-and-Second Tale of Scheherazade” (Beth Atkins) 26
“The ­Thousand-and-Second Tale of Scheherazade” (1845)
by Edgar Allan Poe 36
Edward Page Mitchell: Evolution and American Equality (Rob Welch) 50
“The Senator’s Daughter” (1879) by E.P. Mitchell 57
“Runaway Cyclone,” Or: The First Bengali Science Fiction Story (Christin Hoene) 72
“Runaway Cyclone” (1896/1921) by Jagadish Chandra Bose,
translated by Bodhisattva Chattopadhyay 76
Thomas Edison’s Hypnotizing Machine: Technology,
Science Fiction and “Progress” (Ivy Roberts) 82
“In the Deep of Time” (1896–7), Synopsis and Chapter VIII
(of VIII): “Sea Signaling—The Final Flight” by George (Parsons Lathrop) 92
The Emotional Birth of AI in “Moxon’s Master” (Rob Welch) 100
“Moxon’s Master” (1899), by Ambrose Bierce 108
The Science Fiction Worlds of Edgar Rice Burroughs (Jessie F. Terrell, Jr.) 116
At the Earth’s Core (1914), Chapter 1: “Toward the Eternal Fires”
by Edgar Rice Burroughs 126
“The Glittering Lady” (Riccardo Gramantieri) 133
When the World Shook (1919), Chapter 11: “Resurrection”
by H. Rider Haggard 143
Future Predictions of Past Technologies: “In 1999”
and the History of the Future (Ivy Roberts) 154
“In 1999: Scientific Progress in the Last Century” (1921)
by B. Franklin Ruth 165
Scientifiction, Relativism and the Multiverse: Introduction
to “The Man from the Atom” (Riccardo Gramantieri) 172
“The Man from the Atom” (1923) by G. Peyton Wertenbaker 180
About the Contributors 193
Index 195