Speculative fiction is an umbrella phrase encompassing the more fantastical fiction genres, specifically science fiction, fantasy, horror, supernatural fiction, superhero fiction, utopian and dystopian fiction, apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic fiction, and alternate history in literature as well as related static, motion, and virtual arts.
It has been around since humans began to speak. The earliest forms of speculative fiction were likely mythological tales told around the campfire. Speculative fiction deals with the "What if?" scenarios imagined by dreamers and thinkers worldwide. Journeys to other worlds through the vast reaches of distant space; magical quests to free worlds enslaved by terrible beings; malevolent supernatural powers seeking to increase their spheres of influence across multiple dimensions and times; all of these fall into the realm of speculative fiction.
Speculative fiction as a category ranges from ancient works to cutting edge, paradigm-changing, and neotraditional works of the 21st century. It can be recognized in works whose authors' intentions or the social contexts of the versions of stories they portrayed is now known. For example, Ancient Greek dramatists such as Euripides, whose play Medea (play) seemed to have offended Athenian audiences when he fictionally speculated that shamaness Medea killed her own children instead of their being killed by other Corinthians after her departure. The play Hippolytus, narratively introduced by Aphrodite, is suspected to have displeased contemporary audiences of the day because it portrayed Phaedra as too lusty.
In historiography, what is now called speculative fiction has previously been termed "historical invention", "historical fiction," and other similar names. It is extensively noted in the literary criticism of the works of William Shakespeare when he co-locates Athenian Duke Theseus and Amazonian Queen Hippolyta, English fairy Puck, and Roman god Cupid all together in the fairyland of its Merovingian Germanic sovereign Oberon in A Midsummer Night's Dream. In mythography it has been termed "mythopoesis" or mythopoeia, "fictional speculation", the creative design and generation of lore, regarding such works as J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. Such supernatural, alternate history, and sexuality themes continue in works produced within the modern speculative fiction genre.
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||It is easy to argue persuasively the truism that the lessons of history are best derived from what actually happened, rather than from what nearly happened. It should be added, however, that what happened becomes more fully comprehensible in the light of the contending forces that existed at moments of decision. Understanding of the total historical setting is bound to contribute to a clearer view of the actual course of affairs.
—Harold C. Deutsch
(1904-1995), Introduction, What If? Strategic Alternatives of WWII
A zombie (Haitian French: zombi, Haitian Creole: zonbi) is a fictional undead being created through the reanimation of a corpse. Zombies are most commonly found in horror and fantasy genre works. The term comes from Haitian folklore, in which a zombie is a dead body reanimated through various methods, most commonly magic. Modern depictions of the reanimation of the dead do not necessarily involve magic but often invoke science fictional methods such as carriers, radiation, mental diseases, vectors, pathogens, parasites, scientific accidents, etc.
word "zombie" was first recorded in 1819, in a history of Brazil
by the poet Robert Southey
, in the form of "zombi". The Oxford English Dictionary
gives the word's origin
as West African and compares it to the Kongo
(god) and zumbi
). A Kimbundu
-to-Portuguese dictionary from 1903 defines the related word nzumbi
as soul, while a later Kimbundu–Portuguese dictionary defines it as being a "spirit that is supposed to wander the earth to torment the living". Read more...
Did you know...
On this day...
- 2004 - W. Warren Wagar (b. 1932), an American historian, futures studies scholar, and an expert in the work of pioneering science fiction writer H.G. Wells
Possible events in the future as suggested by science fiction:
- The artificial intelligence Durandal arrives in the Lh'owon system, 97 light years from the Milky Way's center, in 2811.
- In 802,701, The Time Traveller encounters a garden world and sees Humanity has divided into the meek Eloi on the surface and the subdwelling, cannibalistic Morlocks.
Things you can do...
Here are ideas for how you can help improve the coverage of speculative fiction topics on Wikipedia:
Join a WikiProject or task force:
- Science fiction (task force): The 4400, Babylon 5, Battlestar Galactica, Doctor Who, Firefly, Futurama, G.I. Joe, Heroes, Hitchhiker's Guide, Life on Mars, Lost, Pokémon, Red Dwarf, Star Trek, Star Wars, Stargate, Superman, Transformers, Twilight Zone.
- Fantasy: Artemis Fowl, Discworld, Fabelhaven, Harry Potter, Highlander, His Dark Materials, Inheritance Cycle, Lemony Snicket, Middle-Earth, Narnia, Oz, Percy Jackson, Redwall, Roald Dahl, Shannara, A Song of Ice and Fire, Warriors.
- Horror: Buffy, Twilight.
- Other and related: Animation, Anime and manga, Balzac, Children's literature, Comics, Disney, Machinima, Games (Board and tabletop games, Warhammer 40K, RPGs (D&D), Video games (Square Enix)).
Start a requested article:
- Create an article which someone has requested.
Expand a stub:
Expand a new article:
- Expand and update a new speculative fiction article from the following list:
Note: If no articles are shown below, please work on those found in the Archive.
This list was generated from these rules. Questions and feedback are always welcome! The search is being run daily with the most recent ~14 days of results. Note: Some articles may not be relevant to this project.
Rules | Match log | Results page (for watching) | Last updated: 2019-11-16 20:18 (UTC)
Note: The list display can now be customized by each user. See List display personalization for details.
- The Hobbit: Armies of The Third Age (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs | tools) by Sirius317 (talk · contribs · new pages (2)) started on 2019-11-03, score: 40
- The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies - Fight for Middle-earth (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs | tools) by Sirius317 (talk · contribs · new pages (2)) started on 2019-11-03, score: 40
- Electron Sheep (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs | tools) by 올해의수상자 (talk · contribs · new pages (8)) started on 2019-11-03, score: 20
- Cenobite (Hellraiser) (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs | tools) by Casliber (talk · contribs · new pages (2)) started on 2019-11-03, score: 60
- List of vampire traits in folklore and fiction (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs | tools) by Casliber (talk · contribs · new pages (2)) started on 2019-11-03, score: 45
- Yuri Kozukata (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs | tools) by MurielMary (talk · contribs · new pages (23)) started on 2019-11-03, score: 20
- Ninth House (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs | tools) by Starklinson (talk · contribs · new pages (7)) started on 2019-11-03, score: 20
- P. Djèlí Clark (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs | tools) by DragonflySixtyseven (talk · contribs · new pages (9)) started on 2019-11-03, score: 40
- Daniel Sernine (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs | tools) by PriceDL (talk · contribs · new pages (15)) started on 2019-10-30, score: 40
- Rob Hardy (cinematographer) (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs | tools) by Nwyde (talk · contribs · new pages (0)) started on 2019-10-24, score: 80
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Speculative fiction topics