Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Hard Science in Science Fiction

One of the programs I'm going to be on at WisCon Memorial Day weekend is called "What is Science in Feminist SF?" Here's the program description:

When we argue about whether women write more fantasy than SF, are we assuming a particular definition of science that should be questioned? And are we also applying gender bias when we assess the "hardness" of SF by men and women? 

I thought it would be useful to get some ideas from other readers and writers as to what works they consider hard science fiction. Does it matter which science is featured in the book? For example, is physics always a "harder" science than biology? (Here, hardness doesn't refer to how difficult the subject matter is but how rigorous and accurate the science is in the book.) What are your favorite examples of hard science fiction books? How important is "hardness" in your decision to read a particular book? Does it affect how much you enjoy the book or science fiction in general?

2 comments:

Christina Carson said...

If the work is not supported by credible science, then to my mind it is a work of fantasy. I don't read SF if the basis of the story and its extrapolations can't be tied to science so that I can see the possibility that it could be true at some point in time. That's just me, however.

Sandra Almazan said...

Thanks for your comment, Christina!

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