English 192
Science Fiction
Spring 2002
Professor William Warner

Course Overview



Study Materials

Course Policies


Introducing Science Fiction as an object of study

April 2: Defining s/f

April 3: Screening Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1926)
Screening will be held at 5:00PM in Buchanan 1920

April 4: Introducing Science Fiction: A Genealogical Approach: From Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (1818) to Metropolis (1927)
Reading: Henry Jenkins, "A Short History of American Science Fiction". Ursela Leguin, Introduction, Anthology, 15-42.
Useful link

Alternative Worlds; Encountering Aliens

April 9 Tues: Time Travel: H.G. Wells, The Time Machine (text)
Clifford D. Simcik, "Over the River and through the Woods", LeGuin, ed., 125-132.

April 10: Screening: Radio play of "War of the Worlds" (Orson Welles, 1938); This radio play can be found online as the October 30, 1938 broadcast of The Mercury Theatre on the Air

April 11: Worlds at War and the Survival of Humanity: H.G. Wells, The War of the Worlds and Orson Welles, The War of the Worlds (radio play)

Machine intelligence/ AI

April 16: Isaac Asimov I, Robot.

April 18: Asimov and the Gender of Science Fiction
1st Paper due: April 18


The Future of Gender and Difference

April 23 Ursula K. LeGuin, The Left Hand of Darkness

April 24: Screening: The Stepford Wives (Dir: Forbes, 1975)
7:00PM Buchanan 1920

April 25
The Bridge of Difference and The Left Hand of Darkness
Stepford Femininity (Dir.: Forbes, 1975)
Reading from Anthology:
ess, "When I was Miss Dow," Triptree, "The Women Men Don't See," Butler, "Speech Sounds," Dorsey, "(Learning About) Machine Sex"

April 30: Midterm

Computerization, Bio-genetic engineering, and the Cyborg

May 1: Screening: 2001: A Space Odyssey (Kubrick, 1968)

May 2: , 2001: A Space Odyssey: Instrumental Rationality (Lecture Audio)

May 7: 2001: A Space Odyssey
Guest Lecture:
Elizabeth Freudenthal: Men Become Math
Steve Sohn: Science Fiction and the Contact Zone

May 8: Screening: Star Trek: the Next Generation, I, Borg (1992)

May 9: The Star Trek Phenomeon
Guest lecturer, Professor Jim Donlan

May 14: Aliens, Robots and Cyborgs: the "Others" of Science Fiction
Reading: William Gibson, "The Gernsback Continuum", Anthology, Ed. Le Guin, 457-465

May 15: Screening: Blade Runner (Scott, 1982)

May 16: Ridley Scott, Blade Runner
Guest Lecturers:
Jennifer Stoy, Cybernoir
Chris Hoffpauir, Dystopia and Science Fiction: Blade Runner, Brazil and Beyond
2nd paper due: May 16th Topics

The Digital turn: simulation perfected, special effects, and cyberpunk

May 21: A Genealogy of Cyberpunk
Smith, Cordwainer. "Alpha Ralpha Boulevard" Anthology, 49-73;
Gibson, "The Gernsbeck Continuum," Ed. LeGuin, 457-465;
Jenkins, "Cyberpunk" (From "Media and Imagination: A Short History of American Science Fiction ")


May 23rd: 'I'm a very technical boy': Cyberpunk and the Testing of Masculinity"
"Johnny Mnemonic" and "Burning Chrome" (Handout)
Dorsey, "(Learning About) Machine Sex", 746-761


May 28th: Science Fiction Film's Visualization of the Unseen: from Linear Perspecive to Cyberspace VR

May 29th: Screening: The Matrix (Wachowski Brothers, 1999)

May 30th: Mind and Body in The Matrix
Assignment: read the script of The Matrix, by Larry and Andy Wachowski

June 4th: Study sheet handed out and reviewed
Audio for Selected E192 Lectures


June 6th: Honors section presentations and Review for the Final Exam

Final exam: Tuesday June 11, 7:30-10:30PM ;
Location: Buchanan 1910

This page was composed by Professor William Warner. Last changed 4/2/02. This course is part of the Transcriptions Project of the Department of English at UC /Santa Barbara.