Varieties of Science Fiction

Science fiction is one of the most popular literary genres. Growing up from the works of Jules Verne and mythology, he actively developed during the 20th century, having formed a whole set of sub-genres and directions. And although the division of NF on the variety is rather arbitrary, and the varieties are often intertwined with each other, lovers of science fiction literature should know about the most important of them.

«Hard» science fiction. Historically, the first appeared so-called «hard» science fiction, describing inventions and discoveries that do not contradict the scientific laws known at the time of writing the book. The classical works of this subgenre include the books of Herbert Wells (The Time Machine), Jules Verne (20,000 leagues under the water), Alexander Belyaev (Professor Dowell’s Head), Isaac Asimov (Themselves). Space opera. This kind of entertaining NF was formed in the 1920-50’s in the US. The action of works written in the genre of cosmooper, unfolds in space and on other planets. Well-known authors who wrote such books: Edmond Hamilton (Star Wolf), Harry Harrison (The Steel Rat), Robert Heinlein («Starship Troopers»).

Chronophantics. Chronophantics, or, as it is also called, temporal fantasy, narrates about time travel. It is generally accepted that the genre was started by the work of The Time Machine by Herbert Wells, but books dealing with time travel existed before her («The Yankees from Connecticut at the Court of King Arthur», Mark Twain). Alternative history. In the works of this genre, alternative versions of the development of certain historical events are considered. Often, alternative history is combined with chrono-fantasy.

Among the most famous works should be highlighted books: «Let the darkness not fall» (L. Sprague de Camp), «The Man in the High Castle» (Philip K. Dick), the cycle of short stories «Patrol of Time» (Paul Anderson), books from the series » STALKER. Utopia / dystopia. The genre of utopia, devoted to the study of future models of the social order — both ideal and disgusting in its essence — appeared long before the birth of the NF as such (Utopia, Thomas More, 1516), but eventually it became part of the modern fantasy genre . Among the famous works of the 20th century: «We» (Eugene Zamyatin), «1984» (George Orwell), «Oh, Brave New World» (Aldous Huxley).