A Virtual Introduction to Science Fiction is a collaborative effort of academics working in the area of science fiction from all over the world. It is continuously enhanced with material contributed from members of organizations like SFRA or IAFA as well as other individual works by authors and/or scholars of SF.

Silvia Kurlat Ares, Ph.D., is currently an independent researcher and serves as Chair for LASA’s Mass Media and Popular Culture Section. She has written on contemporary Southern Cone Literature and Culture. Her scholarly interests include utopian and dystopian fiction, speculative fiction, critical theory, and popular culture. She is the author of Para una intelectualidad sin episteme (Corregidor, 2006) and A Persistent Illusion: Science- Fiction in Argentina (Forthcoming), and she has coordinated the volume La ciencia ficción en América Latina; entre la mitología experimental y lo que vendrá (2012) for Revista Iberomericana. She has taught at George Mason University and at Johns Hopkins University. Her essays and reviews have appeared in Revista Iberoamericana, Variaciones Borges, Chasqui, Hispamerica, and other journals.

Mark Bould (University of the West of England) co-edits Science Fiction Film and Television, and is an advisory editor of Extrapolation, Historical Materialism, Paradoxa and Science Fiction Studies. He is the author of Film Noir: From Berlin to Sin City (2005), The Cinema of John Sayles: Lone Star (2009) and Science Fiction: The Routledge Film Guidebook (2012), co-author of The Routledge Concise History of Science Fiction (2011), and co-editor of Parietal Games: Critical Writings By and On M. John Harrison (2005), The Routledge Companion to Science Fiction (2009), Fifty Key Figures in Science Fiction (2009), Red Planets: Marxism and Science Fiction (2009) and Neo-Noir (2009).

Ritch Calvin is an Assistant Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies in the Department of Cultural Analysis and Theory at SUNY Stony Brook. He is also the current President of the Science Fiction Research Association (SFRA) and the media reviews editor of the SFRA Review. His work has appeared in Science Fiction Studies, Utopian Studies, Extrapolation, and the Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts, among others. He is currently working on a book on epistemology and science fiction.

Edward Carmien is Professor of English at Mercer County Community College in New Jersey, one of the United States’ approximately 1100 two-year institutions. There he teaches writing, science fiction literature, and fantasy literature. He is a member of the SFWA and the SFRA, has published non-fiction and fiction, admits to a lifelong interest in author C. J. Cherryh, and includes an amusing life detail here at the end of his biography.

Doug Davis is Associate Professor of English at Gordon College in Barnesville, GA, where he teaches American literature and creative writing. He is the former editor of the small press science fiction magazine, The Mage, and the current editor of the Science Fiction Research Association Review. He has published articles on apocalyptic topics ranging from the origins of impact-extinction theory and the role of future-war storytelling in American foreign policy to the fiction of Tim O’Brien and Flannery O’Connor.  He is currently working on a book manuscript, “Technological Distances: Reading Flannery O’Connor in the Future”, in part of which he ponders whether O’Connor, too, may be deemed a slipstream author.

Paweł Frelik teaches in the Department of American Literature and Culture at Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, Lublin, Poland, and in 2011/12 he is a Senior Fulbright Fellow at the University of California, Riverside. His teaching and research interests include science fiction and its visualities, postmodern literature and theory, unpopular culture, and trans-media storytelling. He co-edited three books, including Playing the Universe: Games and Gaming in Science Fiction (2007). He is also the editor of the European Journal of American Studies, an editorial consultant for Science Fiction Studies and Extrapolation, and a member of the editorial board of Journal of Gaming and Virtual Worlds.

Sonja Fritzsche is department co-chair and Associate Professor of German and Eastern European Studies at Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington, IL, USA. She earned her PhD in Germanic Studies from the University of Minnesota and an M.A. in Modern European History from UCLA. Her book is entitled Science Fiction Literature in East Germany (2006) and she is currently editing a critical anthology called World Science Fiction Film. In addition, she has published articles on German literature and film in peer reviewed journals including the German QuarterlyGerman Studies ReviewExtrapolation, and Utopian Studies. Her most recent article is entitled “The Natural and the Artificial: East German Science Fiction Film Responds to Kubrick and Tarkovsky” and appeared in 2010 in Film & History. She also recently published “’Once Upon a Heimat’: Fairy Tale Film as East German Homeland” in the Russian collection Constructing Childhood: Literature, History, An-thropology (Konstruiruia detskoe: philologiia, istoriia, anthropologiia; 2011).

Steffen Hantke is Professor of American Culture at Sogang University in Seoul, South Korea. He has written on contemporary literature, film, and culture. He is author of Conspiracy and Paranoia in Contemporary Literature (1994), as well as editor of Horror, a special topics issue of Paradoxa (2002), Horror: Creating and Marketing Fear (2004), Caligari’s Heirs: The German Cinema of Fear after 1945 (2007), American Horror Film: The Genre at the Turn of the Millennium (2010), and, with Rudolphus Teeuwen, of Gypsy Scholars, Migrant Teachers, and the Global Academic Proletariat: Adjunct Labor in Higher Education (2007). His essays and reviews have appeared in Science Fiction StudiesCritiqueStoryTellingLiterature/Film Quarterly, and other journals.

Zahra Jannessari-Ladani earned her PhD  of English Literature at the University of Tehran. She has teaching experience in several universities, including  the University of Tehran, as a guest lecturer. Her articles have been published in Journal of Language and TranslationResearch in Contemporary World Literature: Pazhuhesh-e Zabanha-ye KharejiThe Fourth Biennial Conference of Comparative Literature on The Self and Others, and Sense of Wonder: A Century of Science Fiction. She has also translated Dr. Kristina Nelson’s The Art of Reciting the Quran and some of Stanley G. Weinbaum’s short stories into Persian.

Sandor Klapcsik is an Assistant Professor of English at the Technical University of Liberec. He was awarded his PhD at the Cultural Studies Department of the University of Jyvaskyla, Finland, in 2010. He was a Fulbright-Zoltai Fellow at the University of Minnesota and did a long-term research at the science fiction archives of the University of Liverpool. His essays were published in Extrapolation, Foundation, and Journal of the Fantastic in Arts, and he received the Jamie Bishop Memorial Award from IAFA for an essay in Hungarian on Philip K. Dick as well as the Mary Kay Bray Award from SFRA for his review on Rewired: The Post-Cyberpunk Anthology. His book Liminality in Fantastic Fiction: A Poststructuralist Approach (2012) is published by McFarland.

Robin Anne Reid is a Professor in Literature and Languages whose scholarly and teaching interests include speculative fiction, critical theory, and fan studies. She has published critical introductions on Arthur C. Clarke and Ray Bradbury, and edited the first encyclopedia on Women and Science Fiction (Greenwood, 2008). She is active in online fandom and is working on a collaborative digital technologies grant with colleagues in psychology, sociology, and linguistics titled: “The Interdisciplinary Internet: Multidisciplinary Methodologies.”

John Rieder is a Professor of English at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa and a member of the editorial board of Extrapolation as well as the advisory editorial board of Science Fiction Studies. He was awarded the Science Fiction Research Association’s Pilgrim Award in 2011 for his essay “On Defining Science Fiction, or Not: Genre Theory, SF, and History” in Science Fiction Studies, July 2010. He is the author of Colonialism and the Emergence of Science Fiction (Wesleyan UP, 2008), Wordsworth’s Counterrevolutionary Turn (U of Delaware Press, 1997), and numerous essays on science fiction, English Romanticism, the institutional history of literary study, and other topics.

Lars Schmeink is lecturer of North American studies and media at the University of Hamburg and the HarborCity University Hamburg, as well as a PhD candidate at the Humboldt University Berlin with a dissertation on genetic posthumanism in contemporary sf. He is co-founder and president of the Gesellschaft für Fantastikforschung (Association for Research in the Fantastic) and serves both as editor-in-chief of the Zeitschrift für Fantastikforschung and as managing editor of the SFRA Review. His most recent publications are two anthologies with De Gruyter publishers: Collision of Realities: Establishing Research on the Fantastic in Europe (co-edited with Astrid Böger) and Fremde Welten: Wege und Räume der Fantastik im 21. Jahrhundert (co-edited with Hans-Harald Müller).

Brian Stableford has published more than seventy novels, most of his recent productions falling into two series, one consisting of futuristic “tales of the biotech revolution” and the other featuring Edgar Allan Poe’s pioneering detective Auguste Dupin, investigating cases that he stubbornly insists have no supernatural component, although his friends and adversaries sometimes take a different view. He has also published more than twenty collections of short stories, more than twenty non-fiction books of scholarly work on the fantastic and science fiction, and more than eighty volumes of translations from French into English.

Alfredo Suppia is Assistant Professor of Film Studies at the Federal University of Juiz de Fora, Brazil, member of the Brazilian Society for Film and Audiovisual Media Studies ( and the Science Fiction Research Association (

Allan Weiss is Associate Professor of English and Humanities at York University in Toronto, Canada. He is Chair of the Academic Conference on Canadian Science Fiction, and co-curated the National Library of Canada exhibit on Canadian science fiction and fantasy, “Out of This World,” in 1995. He is also the author of both mainstream and fantastic short stories; his stories have appeared in such journals and anthologies as Fiddlehead, Windsor Review, Wascana Review, On Spec, and Tesseracts, and his story collection Living Room (Boheme Press) was published in 2001. He is currently working on a monograph on apocalyptic fiction.

Gary Westfahl, now retired from the University of California, Riverside, is an Adjunct Professor at the University of La Verne. In addition to publishing hundreds of articles and reviews, he is the author, editor, or co-editor of more than twenty books about science fiction and fantasy. In 2003, he earned the Science Fiction Research Association’s Pilgrim Award for his lifetime contributions to science fiction and fantasy scholarship.

Lisa Yaszek is Associate Professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology and an executive officer for the Science Fiction Research Association. Her essays on science fiction as cultural history appear in journals including Extrapolation, NWSA Journal, and Rethinking History. Her most recent books include Galactic Suburbia: Recovering Women’s Science Fiction (Ohio State University Press 2008) and the edited anthology Practicing Science Fiction: Critical Essays on Writing, Reading and Teaching the Genre (McFarland 2010).