Where did the term "Speculative Fiction" originate

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epicfantasy7
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Where did the term "Speculative Fiction" originate

Post by epicfantasy7 »

Speculative Ficition is a great term because it encompasses a lot of different writing. I was wondering if anybody knows how the term started. For some reason, in the back of my mind I am thinking that Harlan Ellison started it way back in the day of the Dangerous Visions anthologies.

Anybody know the roots of the term?

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Post by Mikira »

I have the book "How to Write Science Fiction & Fantasy" by Orson Scott Card. He mentions it in the book, but doesn't give an actually year when the term Speculative Fiction came about to encompass these genre. The closest I can come to when in his book is 1975.
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Thanks!

Post by epicfantasy7 »

I have that book too, didn't think to look in it.

I tried to find my old copy of dangerous visions but can't seem to find it. I really suspect that Harlan Ellison started the term.

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Bmat
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Post by Bmat »

From Wikipedia:

The term is often attributed to Robert A. Heinlein. In his first known use of the term, in his 1948 essay "On Writing of Speculative Fiction," Heinlein used it specifically as a synonym for "science fiction"; in a later piece, he explicitly stated that his use of the term did not include fantasy. Heinlein may have come up with the term himself, but there is one earlier citation: a piece in Lippincott's Monthly Magazine in 1889, in reference to Edward Bellamy's Looking Backward: 2000-1887.

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epicfantasy7
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wow, thanks!

Post by epicfantasy7 »

awesome research there!

Puts that question to rest. For some reason I never thought to look it up in the wikipedia.

thanks!
Will

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aldan
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Post by aldan »

wikipedia is a great place to find out such information as that.
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and to appear stupid than
to open it and remove all doubt."
---Mark Twain

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Bmat
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Post by Bmat »

You're welcome.

Does anyone else think of Hitchhiker's Guide when using Wikipedia?

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aldan
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Post by aldan »

Of course! Who wouldn't, who's already read his poorly-named trilogy!
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and to appear stupid than
to open it and remove all doubt."
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Post by Talon Sinnah »

Never read it watched the movie and hated it. :evil:
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Post by who me »

WIKIPEDIA has many things in common with the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy it describes more or less accurately a wide variety of things, loads of totally unqualified people wright for it and it is quickly gaining ground on the conventional encyclopedia, it lacks one very important characteristic that the Hitchhikers guide to the galaxy has and I find very useful- the words DON'T PANIC in large friendly letters on the front cover.


I also know "the pass word"

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